User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 81 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 44 out of 81
  2. Negative: 25 out of 81
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  1. SandyS
    Oct 23, 2009
    5
    Movie was too mixed up... Didn't go along with the books.. Where in the world did Monkey girl come in? Very disappointing.. Love the books! Movie, not so much!
  2. TomG
    Nov 3, 2009
    3
    I read the book's when I was younger. This film truely let me down. The Darren Shan books are from what I remember a very dark comedy. This is not.
  3. ElizabethN
    Oct 23, 2009
    8
    Overall very enjoyable movie. The pacing was a LITTLE too fast, and some of the dialogue was just corny, but I liked it more than I thought I would.
  4. vladimirk
    Nov 12, 2009
    0
    One of the worst movies ever made. Waste of money!
  5. Dec 7, 2010
    10
    woops! accidentally forgot to change my score! I give it a 2
  6. Sep 29, 2011
    3
    Uh....the point of the movie?
  7. Jun 3, 2012
    0
    This was a movie I was very excited for. I love The Cirque Du Freak novels and Darren Shan's books in general. The books give a mysterious mood and show a more darker side to vampires as compared to 'Twilight' or 'the Vampire diaries.' But, the movie of Cirque Du Freak is a comedy, having almost no relation to the characters I loved in the novels. I hated this movie, even when notThis was a movie I was very excited for. I love The Cirque Du Freak novels and Darren Shan's books in general. The books give a mysterious mood and show a more darker side to vampires as compared to 'Twilight' or 'the Vampire diaries.' But, the movie of Cirque Du Freak is a comedy, having almost no relation to the characters I loved in the novels. I hated this movie, even when not compared to the books the poor acting, plot and digital effects makes it not enjoyable. Hopefully if they make a sequel (which is unlikely because of the poor critical response and box office failure) they will correct their flaws. Expand
  8. Mar 15, 2012
    0
    This film was OK as it stood but must have had Darren Shan the author cringing. The crap americanisation of the story and condensation of the events was crass and departed so far from the original books to be barely recognisable. Crepsley was made out to be an almost joke and nothing like the book's sinister version. Likewise, Mr. Tiny's appearance in the story does not in fact appearThis film was OK as it stood but must have had Darren Shan the author cringing. The crap americanisation of the story and condensation of the events was crass and departed so far from the original books to be barely recognisable. Crepsley was made out to be an almost joke and nothing like the book's sinister version. Likewise, Mr. Tiny's appearance in the story does not in fact appear until much later in the series and Darrens family never find out about his life as a vampire. All in all, this film takes the Title from Darren's books and little else. It is a typical american destruction of a really good story. Expand
  9. Jan 20, 2014
    3
    Although John C. Reily tries hard, he can't overcome a poorly written script, poor dialogue, stale acting, horrid plot transitions, an overabundance use of special effects, and a scattered plot
  10. Jan 31, 2012
    10
    This film was amazing, as a book fan i thought the book to film adaptation was actually quite a good, I admit it was lacking quite a lot information, but due to this being a film for children certain things should have been left out, and the fact that its based on the first trilogy of the saga yet was still good, the annoying part however was how out of sequence it was, but overall I loveThis film was amazing, as a book fan i thought the book to film adaptation was actually quite a good, I admit it was lacking quite a lot information, but due to this being a film for children certain things should have been left out, and the fact that its based on the first trilogy of the saga yet was still good, the annoying part however was how out of sequence it was, but overall I love this film and wish there was a second one. Expand
  11. AlexK
    Oct 30, 2009
    8
    8* Good film if you haven't read the books, but thoroughly disappointing if you have read them, it''s nothing alike.
  12. JesseS
    Oct 24, 2009
    9
    I can't understand why critics dislike this movie. It was funny, the action scenes were strong and the plot wasn't really that weak.
  13. K.C.R.
    Oct 26, 2009
    10
    The movie is quirky and definitely one of a kind. Different from its other vampire predecessors, its humorous and less glamorous. The cast is colorful and intriguing. I really hope they make sequels.
  14. zachp
    Oct 30, 2009
    10
    This movie was funny and had action and had a little love story. a great mix of interesting ideas and was a very unique movie. it captured my attention and i loved it. i wish metacritic didn't screw this score up and cause so many people to not go to it. now there may not be a sequel because it didn't make enough profits. thanks!
  15. JulieC
    Nov 1, 2009
    9
    Really enjoyed this movie. The characters were great, very entertaining. The special effects and action were good. It makes you want to see what happens next. I look forward to the sequel.
  16. kgm
    Nov 4, 2009
    1
    Right from the getgo I wondered, did they actually say this was a battle between vampires and vampaneze? The vampaneze? You could call this a brilliant innovation or you could call it: total crap! It
  17. DrewK
    Nov 6, 2009
    10
    Yes i have read the books, and they were amazing. All of them in the series is pure gold and genius. After i read all the books over as many times as i could that year, i heard they were making a film. Now do not get me wrong, i thought the movie looked interesting to see. I wanted to see how the director would film this movie. I saw it and i have to say this: The books were better for Yes i have read the books, and they were amazing. All of them in the series is pure gold and genius. After i read all the books over as many times as i could that year, i heard they were making a film. Now do not get me wrong, i thought the movie looked interesting to see. I wanted to see how the director would film this movie. I saw it and i have to say this: The books were better for obvious reasons. But the movie was not half bad. Sure, it got so much wrong in the movie that it did not even have to be based off the movie, it could have been a movie all in its own it was that off. But it was interesting. John C. Reilly did a marvelous job although i would not have chose him for the role. And of course there was room for a sequel. So i will go see the sequel. Everyone should go see this film, even if you do not like the actors, vampires, or anything along those lines. I am not asking you to love it or even like it, i am just asking for you to give it a try. Expand
  18. ChadS.
    Oct 24, 2009
    4
    While repeating his parents' warning against having a friend like Steve(Josh Hutcherson), a bad influence by their own estimation, "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" makes an allusion to bohemianism, the rejection of ISAs(ideological state apparatuses), in which "college, job, [and], family", the goals that all people are programmed to aspire towards, don't seem to While repeating his parents' warning against having a friend like Steve(Josh Hutcherson), a bad influence by their own estimation, "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" makes an allusion to bohemianism, the rejection of ISAs(ideological state apparatuses), in which "college, job, [and], family", the goals that all people are programmed to aspire towards, don't seem to be Darren's goals, as the boy satirizes his father's mantra of mass conformity. This satirical moment loses its bite, however, since Darren(Chris Massoglia) has no choice in the matter, the matter of secession from the living, when he agrees to the conditions of the pact he makes with Crepsley(John C. Reilly), who turns the boy into a vampire; his compensation for saving Steve's life. It's Steve, not Darren, who's transfixed by vampire iconography, so when this sheltered boy rebels against the dad, he's actually expressing his friend's reservations about societal norms. Since "The Vampire's Assistant" is fitted with the calibration of a light comedy, Fred seems neither happy nor particularly sad about being dead. The film lacks a corresponding scene that directly addresses the boy's burlesquing of his father. Was he, or was he not, an anarchist(or a nihilist) in the making? The film, instead, occupies itself with the ongoing schism between the two factions of vampires, and gives short-shrift to the schism within Fred's half-human/half-vampire self. But if these pacifist breed of vampires have no murderous intent, where's the drama in losing your humanity, since your inhumane side, is humane? Expand
  19. MichaelF
    Oct 29, 2009
    8
    It was okay. It didn't put me to sleep like Twilight's story. I got all the action needed. The books are still better. Many changes but Darren and Steve fighting was entertaining.
  20. calebw
    Nov 16, 2009
    10
    For those that say that the sub plots go no place you are wrong they just have not come in to play just yet. there is more to the story then what you see. the movie is not the books but it still uses the same plot. there is more to come...a lot more.
  21. KellyK
    Nov 3, 2009
    10
    I loved it, it was like Moulin rouge meets twilight! Awesome.
  22. Kenny
    Nov 4, 2009
    2
    I was blown away while watching those who went forth in the movie: John C. Reilly, Ken Watanabe, Salma Hayek, ... but I run into absurd movie, albeit with some entertainment, in a scene. Ridiculous and very freak. Paul Weitz is pointed at the vampire world that is becoming popular because of the garbage that "Twilight", and not only that if it goes beyond that, dares to fool the public I was blown away while watching those who went forth in the movie: John C. Reilly, Ken Watanabe, Salma Hayek, ... but I run into absurd movie, albeit with some entertainment, in a scene. Ridiculous and very freak. Paul Weitz is pointed at the vampire world that is becoming popular because of the garbage that "Twilight", and not only that if it goes beyond that, dares to fool the public with an expired theater tricks. Not worth it. Expand
  23. Zoe
    Nov 4, 2009
    9
    i thought that the actors suited their characters really well. I love any film to do with vampires so this one got a thumbs up. I've read the first book and i thought that it was brilliant, after reading it and then seeing the film, the book is definately better. But, my advice is see the film!! It's good!
  24. MikaelA
    Oct 24, 2009
    7
    Although it had some infuriating aspects, such as Rebecca and Darren's family, I still enjoyed it considerably.
  25. JohnS.
    Oct 25, 2009
    8
    This movie was the (guy version) of Twilight. It may not be one of the best movies but it was entertaining with some comedy that helped a lot, but overall I thought it was decent.
  26. RickA
    Oct 29, 2009
    8
    Well I must say first off that I do not read very much or keep track of what books have been published and so maybe it was a good thing for the sake of this movie. I liked it quite a lot. I go to the movies for entertainment and nothing more and I found this movie very enjoyable. I thought the acting was well done and the story line was most certainly beyond good not excellent mind you Well I must say first off that I do not read very much or keep track of what books have been published and so maybe it was a good thing for the sake of this movie. I liked it quite a lot. I go to the movies for entertainment and nothing more and I found this movie very enjoyable. I thought the acting was well done and the story line was most certainly beyond good not excellent mind you but at the very least good. Collapse
  27. Lex
    Sep 17, 2010
    4
    Sep 17, 2010
    Lex
    4 Visiting a traveling freak show, 16 year-old, Darren is turned into a vampire. Half-vampire, half-human he joins the Cirque du Freak and descends into a fantastic life with a sideshow of fabulous freaks and as war looms between the Vampires and the Vampaneze (who kill whomever they feed on), his bravery will become humanity's last hope. This film by Paul Weitz did not
    Sep 17, 2010
    Lex
    4
    Visiting a traveling freak show, 16 year-old, Darren is turned into a vampire. Half-vampire, half-human he joins the Cirque du Freak and descends into a fantastic life with a sideshow of fabulous freaks and as war looms between the Vampires and the Vampaneze (who kill whomever they feed on), his bravery will become humanity's last hope. This film by Paul Weitz did not meet my expectation to be a good vampire-based or let's just say... a bunch-of-freaks-based flick. Mediocre, that's my word for this one. Weitz did a nice job of making "In Good Company", but this one should be his spectacular movie of all time, and did NOT. Hmmmm... If I may say, this is like another 'no-making any sense' film like 'Batman & Robin' by Joe Schumacher. The books that make this movie possible were great, but the film didn't. The story focuses on two characters: Darren (Massoglia) and his bestfriend, Steve (Hutcherson). Darren, the one that favors spiders and Steve, the one that adores books about Vampires, and all crap breaks loose when jealousy comes up to one of them. It's just what we have hoped for, two bestfriends fighting for what they believed in. And one of them falls in love with a freak, a pretty freak, of course. The only notable characters were Steve, Crepsley, Murlough, and Mr. Tiny. But none of them got a clear brief of their past story and that's the main big hole of the story in the movie. Disappointing. I'm not being rude but, Paul Weitz did a mediocre job of making an adaptation of Darren Shan's book. Too many lacking detail of the story, especially the background briefed story of each character. Putting aside Weitz, Chris Massoglia (Darren Shan) did a horrible act as the main character in the film. I mean, look at his face; he even barely makes an expression, he looks like having a blank face, like day-dreaming or some kind. John Reilly (Crepsley) did a good job, also Ray Stevenson (Murlough). And the only person who saved all the acting problem was Josh Hutcherson (Steve), he did a fine job modeling out his role like all other antagonist role out there, not awesome, but nice. My conclusion? MEDIOCRE. That's it, with the lack of details and horrible acts (aside from Hutcherson), it should have been a direct-to-DVD.
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  28. Oct 15, 2011
    4
    Much of the potential of the book series is wasted here and replaced by the ordinary-kid-gets-extraordinary-powers story. Although the acting isn't particularly bad, there is no spark between characters and no one appears to be at ease. The story is uneven and the ending is unsatisfying. Too much time devoted to light comedy and not enough to the darker themes present in the books.Much of the potential of the book series is wasted here and replaced by the ordinary-kid-gets-extraordinary-powers story. Although the acting isn't particularly bad, there is no spark between characters and no one appears to be at ease. The story is uneven and the ending is unsatisfying. Too much time devoted to light comedy and not enough to the darker themes present in the books. Characters are shallow, with no development. The special effects are decent and some action scenes are done well. Apart from that, there is not much to recommend about this movie. Expand
  29. Aug 1, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. When this first came out, we had a group of young couples that wanted to go to the drive-in. I donâ Expand
  30. May 11, 2012
    6
    Like they say, there is corny dialogue. At the same time it has quite of bit of action and it is somewhat funny. The only problem is that there has yet to be a sequel to this that answers the questions we still have.
  31. Aug 25, 2014
    8
    A great movie that definitely makes me want to read the books!

    The plot was built very nicely. There was action, humor, mystery and bizarre things in it. The opening credits were pretty awesome, too. Darren's character was surprisingly likeable, with his faults, fears and quirks. His friend Steve was good too, but a bit on the annoying side. Crepsley was a rather odd looking vampire,
    A great movie that definitely makes me want to read the books!

    The plot was built very nicely. There was action, humor, mystery and bizarre things in it. The opening credits were pretty awesome, too.

    Darren's character was surprisingly likeable, with his faults, fears and quirks. His friend Steve was good too, but a bit on the annoying side. Crepsley was a rather odd looking vampire, I might add, but his character was very good (whereas I was disappointed with Williem Dafoe's performance). Ray Stevenson was nice, as always.

    There were all sorts of freaks in this film, some of them good, some of them less so. Many of them were shown quickly, but none of them really took part in actual movie, other than Mr. Tall, Rebecca and Snake Boy. The others just sort of hung back on the background.

    I really liked this movie a lot. It had a good, steady story, a nice build-up leaving you wanting more, the little background info given was sufficient to build a feeling of history (although they could have given a bit more information to tell the truth).

    Truly enjoyable, funny and worth every minute! I was sad to see it end.
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  32. Aug 13, 2012
    1
    This movie was pile of Garbage vampire assistant who half vampire then whole deal when he fell for monkey girl meh only thing was good was salma heyek was beard woman lol funny

    but rest movie pile of rubbish that have rotten
  33. Nov 17, 2012
    8
    An interesting premise, but not nearly as good as the book series. It was okay, but i could have used some work. The plot got boring after a while, not as good characters as the books, but still an okay movie. Read the books.
  34. Dec 23, 2013
    3
    If you want to know how to destroy one of the best book sagas, just ask Paul Weitz.
    It isn't a bad movie: great acting, good special effects and music... The adaptation is the mistake.
    The prove is that if you haven't read the book, you will like the movie; but if you have read them, you will only be able to be disappointed.
  35. Jan 31, 2014
    0
    The books are magical, but sinister with a dark, twisted kind of humour. The only thing the books and the film have in common is the title. The films are of a totally different story, and it kind off ruined my feelings for the beloved book series. The whole thing was very disappointing. The dialogues are bad, the corny comments are bad, the special effects are BAD. The characters are weirdThe books are magical, but sinister with a dark, twisted kind of humour. The only thing the books and the film have in common is the title. The films are of a totally different story, and it kind off ruined my feelings for the beloved book series. The whole thing was very disappointing. The dialogues are bad, the corny comments are bad, the special effects are BAD. The characters are weird only, and have no similarities with the book characters. The director deserves a slap in the face. Expand
  36. Jul 6, 2014
    3
    I don't know how to review this thing so I'll just say this is f*cccccccccckkkkkkkkkkkkkkkiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnnnnngggggggggggg horrible. Insults my wonderful taste in movies.
  37. Mar 30, 2015
    10
    Coming from the Manga, and book series, Cirque Du Freak follows protagonist Darren Shan and his friend Steve Leonard going to a circus of "freak shows," as the movie soon explains that they are all monsters. Steve becomes fascinated with one of the actors, Mr. Crepsley who in turn is really a vampire. Steve asks to become a vampire but is turned down because of his blood being rooted byComing from the Manga, and book series, Cirque Du Freak follows protagonist Darren Shan and his friend Steve Leonard going to a circus of "freak shows," as the movie soon explains that they are all monsters. Steve becomes fascinated with one of the actors, Mr. Crepsley who in turn is really a vampire. Steve asks to become a vampire but is turned down because of his blood being rooted by evil. Darren however is infatuated with the spider Mr. Crepsley uses. He takes the spider and runs off. Later Steve is bitten by the same spider, Darren is forced to confront Mr. Crepsley, and in turn for an antidote, he must become a vampire. The following events would spiral Darrens life. Expand
Metascore
43

Mixed or average reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 25
  2. Negative: 5 out of 25
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    40
    The Vampire's Assistant is too busy making impossible claims about just how spectacular its sequels will be to serve up a self-contained story with a satisfying finale.
  2. Reviewed by: Aaron Hillis
    40
    Directed by Paul Weitz (American Pie), the movie suffers from the same tonal schizophrenia of that other recent goth wannabe, "Jennifer's Body": Is it meant to be scary or funny? Oops, it's neither.
  3. Subplots go nowhere, and characters -- many played by well-known actors -- barely get screen time. Willem Dafoe, Salma Hayek, and Jane Krakowski are among those who are there and gone.