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Film / My Best Friend is a Vampire

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A lighthearted 1987 teen horror comedy film directed by Jimmy Huston, with all the silliness one would expect thereof.

After a one-night stand gone horribly awry, high school student Jeremy Capello (Robert Sean Leonard) finds himself one of the undead. Now he must come to terms with being a vampire while trying to get a date with the girl of his (literal) dreams. Oh, and it doesn't help that there are a couple of vampire hunters (David Warner and Paul Willson) in the neighborhood...

Also released under the title I was a teenage vampire.

Tropes used:

  • All Guys Want Cheerleaders: Inverted and subverted — Jeremy ignores cheerleader Candy's obvious interest in him to go after Darla.
  • Alternate History: Modoc informs Jeremy that one of the US Presidents was a vampire (he doesn't say which one).
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Darla has these. Jeremy's sympathetic response ("I have parents too") helps a lot, and laughing about the matter helps them start bonding.
  • Beautiful All Along: Darla, the band nerd.
  • Captain Obvious: McCarthy tests Ralph with garlic and crosses to prove that he's a vampire, and Ralph passes, showing that he's human. So McCarthy suggests stabbing Ralph in the heart with a stake, and if he dies, he's a vampire, right?
    Jeremy: "A stake through the heart would kill anything."
  • Casanova Wannabe: Jeremy's friend Ralph.
  • Chekhov's Hobby: Mrs Capello often listens to a police band radio, and tells Ralph the location of the local speed traps every morning (he and Jeremy car pool to school). Later in the movie, Ralph throws off a car chasing them (they don't know it's Professor McCarthy) by getting it caught in a speed trap.
  • Cryptic Background Reference: After Modoc shrugs off the silver bullets, Modoc confirms that werewolves exist.
  • Dream Sequence: At the beginning of the film, Jeremy has a particularly bizarre dream, apparently inspired by an Urban Legend of his high school, involving the girl's locker room, Darla and a nun with a pair of giant shears...
  • The '80s: The film was made in 1987.
  • Femme Fatale: Nora.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampires: Modoc and Jeremy.
  • Good Parents: Jeremy's parents do wildly misinterpret what's going on, but they clearly do love their son and they're doing their well-meaning best to be as supportive of him as possible.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Professor McCarthy at the end, after getting om-nom-nom-nominated by the other vampires.
  • Knight Templar: Professor McCarthy, who believes that vampires are The Virus and must be stopped lest there be a Vampire Apocalypse. Even as Jeremy explains that vampires aren't what he thinks and spares his life, he keeps trying to kill him. He finally stops after being made into one.
    • After failing to kill Modoc with silver bullets, he then thinks he can kill centuries-old Modoc with his bare hands. This is right after Jeremy (who's been a vampire for less than a week) has completely disarmed him and lifted him into the air like he was made of feathers.
  • Masquerade: Apparently the butcher industry is well aware of the existence of vampires, and provides their sustenance.
  • Market-Based Title: The ever-more-appropriate I Was A Teenage Vampire in non-US markets.
  • Meaningful Name: "McCarthy" can't be an accident, considering how the professor talks about how those commies - er, vampires - are gonna get us if they aren't stopped RIGHT NOW, and his willingness to kill people who only might be vampires.
  • Mistaken for Gay:
    • Jeremy's parents conclude from his odd behavior and other strange goings-on that their son is gay.
    • In one version for broadcast TV, they thought he was just on drugs.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: An extreme case in that the story is set in Texas, but nobody in the cast has a Texan accent.
  • Ordinary High-School Student: Jeremy.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: While "undead" vampires can't go out in the sun, "living" vampires (like Jeremy and Modoc) are at most slightly annoyed by it. (This concept has roots in traditional Romanian folklore.) They do actually age, albeit slowly - the equivalent of one human year per decade. They also have some mind-control abilities and can transform into wolves. Crosses also seem to have no effect.
    • Professor McCarthy seems to think that vampires have a weakness to silver. He's incorrect.
  • Shout-Out: outside the US, the movie is called "I was a teenage vampire", obviously in homage to "I Was a Teenage Werewolf"
  • Supernatural Angst: Jeremy is distraught at the thoughts of being a teenager for the next twenty years. Fortunately, he gets over it rather quickly.
    Modoc: "Please tell me you're not going to sulk for the next twenty years."
    Jeremy: "No, but I think I'm entitled to a few minutes."
  • Vampires Hate Garlic: Unfortunately true for living vampires. Much to the distress of Jeremy, who loved it. It gives him away at the end when he hugs Ralph while Ralph has on a garlic garland and recoils in pain.
  • Van Helsing Hate Crimes
  • Vegetarian Vampire: Blood is bought at butcher shops. Modoc suggests pig's blood, B negative, to Jeremy. The butcher Jeremy goes to seems to be well aware of what he is and teases him about it being his first time.
  • What Does She See in Him?: Both genders do this, with Ralph and Gloria equally bewildered by respective friends Jeremy and Darla's attraction to each other.
  • Why We Cant Have Nice Things: Modoc's explanation for why humans are afraid of vampires involves "a few bad apples in the Middle Ages." You can practically hear his voice dripping "I'm looking at you here, Dracula."