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Coffee Break with Liz and Kate » Entertainment, Headline » Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant – Movie Review

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant – Movie Review

vampires-assistantRating: PG-13 for sequences of intense supernatural violence and action, disturbing images, thematic elements and some language.

Genre: Comedy

Staring: Chris Massoglia, John C. Reilly, Ken Watanabe, Salma Hayek

Director: Paul Weitz (Yes, he is the brother of New Moon director, Chris Weitz)

Running time: 1:48

Plot: The Vampire’s Assistant tells the frightening tale of a boy who unknowingly breaks a 200-year-old truce between two warring factions of vampires. Pulled into a fantastic life of misunderstood sideshow freaks and grotesque creatures of the night, one teen will vanish from the safety of a boring existence and fulfill his destiny in a place drawn from nightmares.14-year-old Darren (Chris Massoglia) was like most kids in his suburban neighborhood. He hung out with his best friend, got decent grades and usually stayed out of trouble. But when he and his buddy stumble upon a traveling freak show, things begin to change inside Darren. That’s the exact moment when a vampire named Larten Crepsley (John C. Reilly) turns him into something, well, bloodthirsty. –© Universal

Kate says:  2 stars “I’ve been looking forward to seeing this movie as perfect light-hearted Halloween treat.  I really wanted to like it and for the opening half hour I did.  I was entertained getting to know the story and characters and eager for the vampire journey. The rest of the movie though seemed to hop from scene to scene never really getting beneath the surface of the characters.  There were some thoroughly entertaining shots of the cirque freaks, but the movie felt longer than it’s 1:48 running time.

Ebert says: 1 1/2 stars “This gruesome grotesquerie is incredibly wrapped up into a story that grunts and groans and laboriously offers up a Moral at the film’s end, which is, and I quote: “It’s not about what you are, it’s about who you are.” I could have told you that.” (see full review)

Rotten Tomatoes says:  38 % “Consensus: This overstuffed, scattershot vampire flick suffers from poor characterization and an unwieldy mix of scares and chuckles.”  (see full review)

Eric Snider says:  B- “The director, Paul Weitz (“American Pie,” “About a Boy”), who co-wrote the screenplay with Brian Helgeland (“A Knight’s Tale”), keeps the tone just dark enough to be effective without being too scary, and always funny but not cartoonish.” (see full review)

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