Jamie Foxx, Snoop Dogg, Dave Franco in Vampire-Hunter Tale – Deadline
The vampire genre has survived countless indignities over the decades – Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Where Dracula 2000, somebody? – so it will surely emerge largely intact after the abuse must now endure courtesy of Quarter day. The premise isn’t half bad, with a high-profile vampire trying to go straight for the sake of his wife and young daughter, and the presence of Jamie Foxx and Snoop Dogg in the lead roles provides some attraction, fun and hiding. But the script never rises to the occasion, resulting in a hodgepodge mess that, at nearly two hours, is also half an hour too long for its own good, or someone else’s. another.
The setting – the dregs of the San Fernando Valley – looks little less like prime vampire real estate compared to Transylvania, but it’s where a reformed vampire with the unlikely name of Bud Jablonski (Foxx ) makes a living by cleaning swimming pools. Seeing no improvement in her husband’s financial future, his wife Jocelyn (Meagan Good) announces her intention to move to Florida, with their young daughter in tow, unless Bud finds real money ($7,000). $ is its digit) in a few days.
Bud doesn’t even have half that amount. Almost immediately, however, the presence of zombies/undead/vampires/what-have-you makes itself known, and in a very concocted way, Bud sees only a secret and, according to him, temporary return to his old ways. vampires is the only way to keep his family intact.
A requirement set forth by the cockamamie script is that Bud be accompanied at all times by a caretaker, Seth (Dave Franco), a totally un-streetwise and mostly unfunny doofus who continuously apologizes for his thorough doofusness. With the writers just seeming to make stuff up as they go along without the benefit of the rewrite, the film crumbles in one direction and, moments later, crumbles in another, gestures that seem far more designed to keep a wild and often incomprehensible on-screen action only to make any dramatic sense. A few more passages to the script could have been helpful.
A vampire eminence eventually emerges in the form of Audrey (Karla Souza), prompting action that becomes increasingly hectic and, ultimately, exhausting; opponents stand against each other until, at least from the viewer’s perspective, something has to give. Since it’s no surprise how things will end up, it would have been much better to go shorter and tighter than longer and longer.
Dramatically, it’s a shame, because first director JJ Perry seems to have given this opportunity all it’s got in terms of action. Perry has long been one of the busiest and most accomplished fight choreographers/stunt coordinators/second unit directors in the business; the Fast and Furious and John Wick the series are only among the most recent of its few decades of credits. Based on the evidence here, it’s clear that Perry certainly knows how to film intense action. Unfortunately, there’s little sense or consistency in the storytelling (the script is by the prolific duo of Zack Snyder and Shay Hatten, veterans of several John Wick and Army of the Dead / Army of Thieves slices), so it remains to be seen what Perry could do with better constructed and more engaging hardware.
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