Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant

An entertaining adaptation of The Saga of Darren Shan, now on DVD...

3/5
Dir Paul Weitz US (TBA)

The latest bid to fill the looming gap left by the end of Harry Potter is this scattershot but entertaining adaptation of The Saga of Darren Shan, a series of kids’ books narrated by the central character, a teenager caught up in a supernatural war. John C Reilly gamely chomps the scenery as showman Crepsley, who invites Darren (Chris Massoglia) into an underworld of freaks and vampires.

There’s a lot of backstory and the plot is often hazy. There are also so many characters that some barely register, while others – like our teen hero – are just unlikeable. It’s very energetic, but a more relaxed sequel, in which everyone has fun, might be a big improvement.
Tom Huddleston

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