Directed by: Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer (Disaster Movie)
Starring: Jenn Proske, Matt Lanter, Diedrich Bader, Chris Riggi, Arielle Kebbel, Ken Jeong
Of course, Vampires Suck is awful. That really was never in question. It’s not as if Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer will ever grow into anything that could vaguely pass for good filmmakers. With luck, practice and divine intervention, these boys might aspire to mediocrity borne on a cloud of the sophomoric. So far, they have not transcended the rancid, and their sense of humor has yet to attain the level of juvenile, let alone sophomoric. Vampies Suck marks their fifth film as a writer-director team (giving new meaning to the term “double threat”). There is no discernible improvement over the course of their five movies.
Vampires Suck is ostensibly a spoof of the Twilight movies. Unfortunately, it is far less successful at being intentionally funny than the Twilight movies are at being unintentionally funny. The level of parody ranges from giving werewolf boy Jacob (Christopher N. Riggi) two rows of an improbable number of nipples to having him transform into a Chihuahua rather than a wolf. Many of the “gags” are virtually indistinguishable from what takes place in the real movies. Others work on the assumption that the viewer is expertly versed in the series itself. For instance, slow motion is called “Hardwicke 101,” presupposing the audience knows who directed the first Twilight movie. That seems a bit of a leap, but I don’t suppose it matters since the obvious jokes are no better.
The plot—such as it is—is an unwieldy telescoping of the first two Twilight movies. Now, you might think that this would at least give Vampires Suck some kind of form, but you haven’t reckoned on the ineptitude of Messrs. Friedberg and Seltzer, which is nothing short of spectacular. (And if I see “nothing short of spectacular” excerpted and slapped on a DVD case, I’ll be more amused than I was by anything in the movie.) Parts of Vampires Suck actually appear to have been hooked together out of order—not that it would help if that weren’t the case.
It’s the usual array of unfunny gags and flatulence, and pop-culture references that are theoretically funny simply because the audience might recognize them. I mean, is the fact that Becca’s (newcomer Jenn Proske) mother “hooked up with some pro-golfer” (Tiger Woods, we know this because there’s a picture of him) actually funny or even topical? Are Buffy the Vampire Slayer gags relevant? (Not to worry, she is labeled so you can’t miss the “joke.”) In short, it’s the same old witless crapfest we’ve come to expect from these filmmakers. The sad part is that—as of last Friday—this thing was shaping up as the second most popular film of the weekend. Rated PG-13 for crude sexual content, comic violence, language and teen partying.