What do you get when you have a well cast film, great visuals and a plot that goes no where? This film! Cirque du Freak is quite a boring film, nothing happens for the longest time. The beginning has a bit going on and then the end kind of does but the huge inbetween is uneventful and a snoozefest. Which is quite a shame because this had some much potential to be a fun and exciting film. I haven’t read the book that this is based on, and I hope it is more exciting than this. The film is about two friends Steve and Darren, they happen to come across a circus full of weird and wonderful things. Eventually this leads to Darren having to join the circus and become a vampire, but this does not sit well with Steve.
On to the good stuff, this film has a great cast and they all for the most part do a decent job with the material. The stand out is easily John C. Reilly as Larten Crepsley the vampire. His lady (the bearded lady that is) is played by a gorgeous Salma Hayek, a couple that shouldn’t work but it does. You can see these two had a lot of fun with their roles, and they do ham it up a bit, Reilly more so but he is just so entertaining. Josh Hutcherson plays Steve and he is the better of the two boys, not to say that Chris Massoglia isn’t good but he struggles to make his role interesting. Not completely his fault, the script is pretty uneventful. Patrick Fugit as the Snake Boy was a bit weird at first, but I dug him. The visuals looked amazing for the most part, some of the circus act stuff was really awesome. They have a bunch of weird ‘freaks’ and they made them look weird and wonderful all at the same time. The costume design was great too, I loved the costumes Salma had to wear, just stunning.
On to the bad stuff, as I said this is so uneventful, it feels like it takes so long to actually get where it is going. Some of the plot points about other vampires is a bit confusing with the way it is explained and then it doesn’t go anywhere. The pacing is all off, at times it wants to speed through and then slow down. It is easily 25 minutes too long, a lot could have been cut out that had nothing to do with the main plot. I have to wonder if they thought about structure at all when planning this film out. I really don’t like it when a film makes me look at the clock every 5 minutes and I found myself doing this through most of the film. Sitting there waiting for something to happen is not very entertaining especially when it doesn’t exactly pay off. I really can’t recommend this film, or check it out for the performance by Reilly and check out the visuals at the circus and the costumes and fast forward the rest of it.