I had the pleasure of watching the new take on Dracula and his most famous companion in an early screening of “Renfield,” and I have to say it is a fun, black comedy that both pays homage to the 1931 classic and gives a fresh spin on the most famous of vampires. While this flick may be a bit gory for some, it is a film with a perfect cast and amazing humor.
Nicholas Hoult played the title character and did so to perfection. He was equally a long-lived servant of the Dark Lord who had seen far too much, and also a man innocent to the ways of the world and his own agency. Despite knowing he did despicable things in service to Dracula; he is a very sympathetic character and you feel for him as he tries to forge his own life. Even if he does eat bugs.
Nicolas Cage was perfect as the entitled, selfish, and over-the-top Count Dracula. His acting style was just what the role needed and he delivered. If you could imagine Bela Lugosi unhindered by the special effect limitations of the 30s and the style of story that was acceptable at that time, you’d still want Nick Cage. His erratic behavior and thirst for power (and blood) were exactly what this film needed.
And what can I say about Awkwafina? She is awesome in this film, with a big attitude in a small package. She provides a fresh attitude and is a staunch ally in Renfield’s quest to forge his own path. Her performance is definitely a highlight of this movie. She voices all the WTF thoughts that go through our minds and is the cop we’d most like in our corner in real life.
With a great supporting cast and an organized crime connection, this was a fun film, though the mob boss stuff gave me a little bit of a flashback to 1992’s Innocent Blood. Overall, the tone of the movie will definitely appeal to those with a darker sense of humor, but it’s really a movie about relationships. Bad ones and how to get out of them. Well, if you’re the familiar of Count Dracula. Hopefully getting out of a bad relationship for you will not be nearly as bloody.
I definitely recommend this movie. 8.5/10, though I am tempted to go higher.
Check out this trailer and then head out to see it. Renfield opens in theaters on April 14th, 2023.
Are you more into vampire slaying? Check out this panel with cast members from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.