Vampire comedy has cute moments but lacks bite.
  • Review Date: November 5, 2012
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2012
  • Running Time: 93 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Vamps seems to be obsessed with the topic of aging and how it can bring wisdom, along with nostalgia. Unconditional friendship and love despite age differences are also explored.

Positive role models

Goody has been alive for two centuries and makes candid observations about how life has changed -- for the worse. But she also makes a point of helping humans and drinks animals' blood to avoid feeding on humans. Both Goody and Stacy put love and friendship over eternal life.


Most of the violence is comical but cringe-inducing -- like when the girls drink the blood of rats and pigeons (they squeeze them like juiceboxes or stick straws in them). A man's dismembered body (including his decapitated head) is revealed, but it's not really scary (it's very fake looking). A vampire is killed, decapitated, comes back to life, and then is finally killed once and for all.


One love scene in which a couple makes out on a bed, takes off their shirts, and are then shown in the "afterglow." Also several kissing scenes.


Occasional profanity includes "bitch," "s--t," "a--hole," and one "f--k."


Apple products are mentioned, but otherwise, no overt product placements.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

A guy snorts coke (off camera, but viewers see him pinching his nostril, and he later has a nosebleed); people in bars drink cocktails and smoke cigarettes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Vamps is a paranormal comedy about twentysomething vampire BFFs who must navigate the challenges of being young decade after decade. Gen X parents will be drawn to director Amy Heckerling's reunion with her Clueless star Alicia Silverstone, but teens into the whole vampire genre might be interested, too. Expect occasional strong language (one "f--k," plus "s--t," "a--hole," "bitch," etc.) and several kissing scenes -- one that leads to a love scene and a pregnancy. The violence is mostly comical, but there are a couple of decapitations and some cringe-inducing scenes of the vamps drinking rats' and pigeons' blood. Adults drink at clubs, and one guy does cocaine (off camera) on a date.

Parents say

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What's the story?

Goody (Alicia Silverstone) is a vampire who was turned in the 19th century by Cisserus (Sigourney Weaver), a "maker" who also transformed Stacy (Krysten Ritter) in 1992. After two decades together, Goody and Stacy -- who only consume animal blood -- live in Manhattan, where they work and go out all night and sleep all day. Things change when Stacy meets Joey Van Helsing (Dan Stevens of Downton Abbey) and sparks fly, despite his father's (Wallace Shawn) status as a vampire hunter. Goody also bumps into her '60s love, former activist Danny (Richard Lewis). Soon Goody and Stacy end up wondering whether they'd be better off ridding themselves of their maker and becoming their "true age."

Is it any good?


Anyone who loved the immensely quotable, zeitgeist-capturing 1995 comedy Clueless will be excited to see Silverstone and director Amy Heckerling reteam. But the allure of the reunion wanes when it's obvious that while VAMPS might be cute and offer the occasional laugh, it's also amateurish and forgettable.

Despite the finely assembled cast, there's just not much to this comedy besides being a vehicle for nostalgia and reminding viewers how aging can be a bitter process. Heckerling does amusingly poke fun at the way everyone is so techno-dependent now (a lounge singer even checks her smartphone during her performance), but everything from the story to the special effects are thin and silly.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the popularity of vampire tales. How is Vamps different than others? Will it appeal to teens?

  • What does Goody observe about the differences between current times and years gone by? Why is she so critical about the ubiquity of phones, gadgets, and social media? Do you agree?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:November 2, 2012
DVD release date:November 13, 2012
Cast:Alicia Silverstone, Krysten Ritter, Sigourney Weaver
Director:Amy Heckerling
Studio:Anchor Bay Entertainment
Topics:Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Run time:93 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:violent images, some drug material, sexual content and language

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 13 years old Written byselenalintin January 9, 2013

Really Great for pre teens and teens

Pre teens mostly enjoy this movie
Kid, 12 years old December 19, 2012


I think this movie is for 13 years and up because it has some passionate kissing and a little bit of violence. Also some images may be unsuitable for kids. For example in one scene a vampire gets burned. I hope this was useful.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byDorotea Dukovac August 21, 2014


Good movie. Just it is stupid when main character dies at the end. OK, in that case they should both die, not just one, or nobody should die.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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