Check out our review of this smart and witty send-up that follows an endearingly unhip quartet of vampires struggling to keep up with the times.
Studio and Year:
The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Paramount - 2014
Feature running time:
English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio
English, English SDH
Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi, Jonathan Brugh, Cori-Gonzalaez-Macuer, Stu Rutherford
Written & Directed by:
Jemaine Clement & Taika Waititi
Blu-ray Disc release Date:
July 21, 2015
Written and directed by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi What We Do In the Shadows
introduces us to age-old vampire flatmates being filmed by a New Zealand documentary crew. Viago, Deacon, and Vladislav are vampires who are finding that modern life has them struggling with the mundane—like paying rent, keeping up with the chore wheel, trying to get into nightclubs and contemplating where their next “meal” is coming from. Ranging in age from 183 to 8,000, and in appearance from adorably youthful to Nosferatu-crusty, they get on one another’s nerves, squabble over household chores, struggle to keep up with the latest trends in technology and fashion, and revel in antagonizing the local werewolf pack.
When I read the press release for What we do in the shadows
I couldn’t help but think, really? Vampires..again? Haven’t we beaten this subject matter do death? Well I guess not because What we do in the shadows
is simply a hoot! The film is a mockumentary that follows this group of vampires, capturing not only the events of their daily existence but their exploits as they deal with and encounter locals. It turns the genre on its ear via a cracking good, art house flavored satire that serves up one good chuckle after the next. I won’t bother to synopsize the storyline as I don’t want to give away any of the situational gags and zany character interplay that fueled the fun.
The film’s pitch perfect deadpan humor, affable charm and lightly veiled ode to the roots of its subject are a testament to the writing. I was instantly drawn in by the likeable characters and funny bone tickling goofiness which never felt silly and made you laugh at exactly the points intended. What we do in the shadows
was 85 minutes well spent. I just sat back and enjoyed myself. ‘Nuff said…
Winner of the Toronto International Film Festival Midnight Madness People’s Choice Award, What we do in the shadows
was also an Official Selection at the Sundance Film Festival, the Berlin International Film Festival, and more.
The rating is for bloody violent content, sexual material and language.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency effects:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- Low frequency extension * (non-rated element): NA
- DSU Rating * (non-rated element): NA
What we do in the shadows comes to Blu-ray Disc from Paramount Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 34 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.3 Mbps.
- Black Level/Shadow Detail:
- Color Reproduction:
Intentionally this film won’t impress with a deep, vibrant color palette or glossy, razor sharp high definition imagery. It offers fair delineation, stable sharpness and crisp definition. Colors are limited to various shades of gray, blue, and brown. Splashes of red are sprinkled throughout. This keeps it looking a little drab but not out of the ordinary based upon the subject matter. Depth during wide angle camera views ebbs and flows but this appears innate to the photography and the limited perspective offered by the dim settings used in the film. Blacks appear black in most cases and detail in low light and shadowy backgrounds is quite good. I didn’t see any signs of video related artifacts.
The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack had no trouble rendering clear and well-articulated dialogue. This is not a film that requires heavy use of surround sound to deliver its message but it does rely on the entire soundstage for proper atmosphere and low frequency detail from time to time. The mix does a decent job of creating the right sounds at the right levels and placing them appropriately in the sound field’s acoustic environment. Low frequency effects are used to add solidity to sound effects and the film’s music score. I thought the presentation served the source material well and sounded fine.
- Commentary by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi
- (HD) Behind the Shadows – 17 minute featurette
- (HD) 12 Deleted Scenes
- (HD) Video Extras (9 segments including the 27 minute original short film)
- (HD) Interviews – (6 segments)
- (HD) Promo Videos – (6 segments)
- (HD) Poster Gallery
Written and directed by Jemaine Clement & Taika Waititi What we do in the shadows
is a genre bending and refreshingly smart comedy that proves very entertaining. It comes to Blu-ray from Paramount Home Entertainment featuring gratifying high definition video and crystal clear lossless sound mated with an excellent supplemental package that is worth exploring for fans. When you’re in the mood for something light and a little different when the gangs over for a few beers, What we do in the shadows
is a sure bet on Blu-ray.
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JVC DLA-RS4910 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
(Calibrated with Calman 5 & C6 Meter from Spectracal)
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Carada Masquerade Horizontal Masking System
Marantz AV8802 13.2 Channel Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-103D Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (With Darbee video processing)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" and In-Ceiling series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SVS PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
Panamax M5400-PM Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package