“Vampire Academy” exists simply as a marketing concern. Sure, the film is based on a series of successful young adult novels but the reality is much crasser. The makers of “Vampire Academy” have no real interest in the books; they’re inherent appeal or doing justice to why the books became successful. No, “Vampire Academy” exists because somewhere in Hollywood someone saw the books, heard they were set in a school for Vampires and got the idea for the awful tagline “They ‘Suck’ at School.” Hey-o!
“Vampire Academy” supposedly tells the story of two best friends who attend a school where one is trained to protect the Vampire high class and the other is part of the Vampire high class. Zoey Deutch stars as Rose, a Dhampir, and a protector of the Vampire high class known as the Moroi. Rose’s best friend is the future Moroi Queen, Lissa (Lucy Fry). Together the two have formed a psychic bond that allows Rose to read Lissa’s thoughts and even see through her eyes; as narratively convenient a talent as I’ve ever heard one.
There is a third class of Vampire called the Strigoi, a race of killers who briefly give the film a dangerous life. Unfortunately, the Strigoi don’t really matter unless there is a sequel. Yes, “Vampire Academy” is so wildly, cluelessly, market-driven that the most interesting narrative complication is one built solely to create the chance of another cluelessly market driven idiot movie.
There isn’t single genuine moment in “Vampire Academy.” Every empty scene evokes an attempt to appeal to a fictional youth market devoid of the conscience needed to know they are being marketed to without consideration of taste or intelligence. And in case you don’t believe me just check out the brooding Robert Pattinson look-alike, Dominic Sherwood, the filmmakers cast in the role of one of the girls’ love interests and tell me that wasn’t a calculated decision.
Mercenary calculation is at the heart of every moment of “Vampire Academy” from the script which is little more than 90 minutes of idiot dialogue explaining the dopey backstory or simplemindedly summing up exactly what we are seeing on screen to the wildly predictable story. The predictability is an obvious calculation; no one wanted a screenwriter wasting precious time on creating something that might distract from the marketing campaign.
“Vampire Academy” isn’t a movie; it’s a 90 plus minute commercial for itself. Each scene is trailer ready, every line of dialogue intended to explain things you should be able to understand out of sheer scene construction. Maybe the filmmakers are assuming you’re not very bright simply because you decided to see this movie. Maybe they’re right.