It’s sad that watching the protagonist, played by Anton Yelchin, is a reminder of how much his untimely death deprived the World. He plays a nerd graduating into The Cool Kid tier of the school hierarchy like someone who might well have experienced something similar in his own life. Of course, the satirical moral of the story is that you can gravely regret turning your back on the geek culture that made you what you are.
The film’s Las Vegas setting is perfect for a vampire story and, as one of the characters observes, a suburb of a city with nocturnal habits and a transient, showbiz population is the perfect environment for a 21st-century vampire to hide out in. Showbiz is embodied in the story by an excellent, Russell Brandesque turn from David Tennant as a superstar magician with an obsessive, but strictly hands-off, interest in the real-world occult.
After a gory-funny cold opening, the plot rightly takes a little bit of time to unfurl its batwings, but the set-up is engaging and assured and leads us, via scary and seemingly insurmountable challenges, to at least two well-judged final showdowns.