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Film / The Little Vampire

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The Little Vampire is a 2000 comedy-horror film based on the children's book series of the same name.

Tony is a 9-year old boy who recently moved to Scotland from California. One night, Tony meets a young vampire boy named Rudolph. Rudolph is on the run from a vampire hunter named Rookery. Tony helps the weakened Rudolph by letting him feed on neighboring cattle. This starts a friendship between the two boys. When Rudolph tells Tony of his family's desire to become human again, Tony becomes set on helping them.

This film provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Nationality: Tony is an American but in the book he's German.
  • Adaptation Name Change: Due to the setting being moved to Scotland.
    • Anton Bohnsack is renamed Tony Thompson.
    • Rüdiger Von Schlotterstein is renamed Rudolph Sackville-Bagg. His younger sister Anna keeps her first name, but his older brother Lumpi der Starke is renamed Gregory Sackville-Bagg.
    • Rüdgier's parents Ludwig der Fürchterliche and Hildegard die Durstige are renamed Frederick and Freda Sackville-Bagg.
    • Geiermeier becomes Rookery.
  • Age Lift: Rüdiger is 10 in the books, while Rudolph is 9.
  • All There in the Manual: The novelization gives out lots of details not seen in the movie, such as Lord McAshton finding his grandsons under their bed as per Tony's orders. This explains why he shows up at the Thompson house and asks Bob to kill their son.
  • The Bully: Flint and Nigel McAshton are two boys who bully Tony at his new school. Ironically, their grandfather is soft with Tony's dad.
  • But Not Too Foreign: The film is a German-Dutch-American production. It takes place in Scotland, but Tony only just recently moved there from America.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Rookery is a definitive threat to the Sackville-Baggs' due to his equipment being the Vampires' greatest weakness. However, even it isn't any match against Tony and later his parents once they get into the fight against him, easily and quickly serving the Vampire Hunters' ass on a platter.
  • Dreaming of Times Gone By: Tony has been having nightmares involving Rudolph's family and the amulet of Attamon ever since he moved to Scotland. After he finds out they're not nightmares but things that actually happened, he starts having visions while he is awake too. Turns out this is because he has a natural mental sympathy to vampires, and because the amulet is concealed under the floorboards in his bedroom.
  • Exact Words: How Tony avoids making his parents' suspicious, by telling them the truth but not the whole truth. When his parents ask him about having his new friend Rudolph come over for a sleepover, he tells them truthfully that he already asked him. Then when his parents ask about having the Sackville-Bagg's over for dinner, he tells them that they'd "rather have you for dinner."
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: Before heading out to the dinner party, Tony's dad asks him to draw a picture of Tiger Woods. Later in the film, as the camera pans over Tony's room, a picture of a literal tiger in the woods can be seen.
  • Just Whistle: Anna gives Tony a good luck charm (dead mouse), and tells him to whistle if he ever needs her help. He later does so when Rookery shuts him in a coffin, and Anna, as promised, shows up to let him out.
  • Muggles Do It Better: Rookery, with his glowing cross and radar, is a serious threat to the Sackville-Baggs and comes close to killing them several times. Human Tony and his parents prove much more of a match for him than the vampires. Tony and Rookery are also much quicker to figure out what happened to the amulet, since they are unaffected by daylight and have access to modern information.
  • Not Growing Up Sucks: Rudolph and Anna have been stuck mentally and physically children for 300 years, which they dislike. Gregory arguably has it the worst as he's been stuck in puberty this entire time.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: The vampires drink human blood, but can survive on animal blood or — if necessary — eggs as well. They are afraid of the sun and it remains uncertain if sun light would kill them, since the psychologist's desensibilisation program is never tested in practice. A spear through the heart would kill these vampires (as well as any living creature) and they don't like garlic. Throughout the day, the vampires in this story are unable to move and look dead for the curious observer. Their powers include: Telekinesis (Clan patriarch Frederick can shut a door without even looking at it), super strength (Rudolph can shove a wardrobe in front of a door, while Frederick can lift a person by just two fingers under a chin), hypnosis, flight, and shape-shifting.
  • The Reveal: Throughout the movie, Tony has had dreams and visions of past events, particularly of Rudolph's long-lost uncle Von and his lover, Elizabeth McAshton. When Tony, Rudolph and Anna find Elizabeth's tomb, they discover that the amulet is not there. That’s when Tony has a vision of Elizabeth's final moments, revealing the location of the amulet.
    Tony: The stone is in my room! No wonder I've had those dreams!
  • Puppy Love: There's Ship Tease between 9-year old Tony and Rudolph's sister Anna.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Nigel and Flint get a mild treatment of this after Tony and Rudolph scare them silly.
  • Undead Child: Rudolph and his two siblings have been dead since the 1700's.
  • Van Helsing Hate Crimes: In addition to directing his violence against the mostly-harmless Sackville-Baggs, Rookery has a twisted version of their amulet intended to literally send the vampires to hell rather than allow them to become human.
  • Vegetarian Vampire: With the exception of Gregory, the Sackvilles prefer cattle. Drinking human blood is technically cannibalism.
  • Weakened by the Light: Strong light hurts and weakens vampires, with the implication that a strong enough light could have killed Frederick.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Rookery assumes Tony is a vampire and nearly runs him down; later he traps Tony in a crypt with every intention of leaving him there. Nor does he have a problem hunting Rudolph or his siblings; in fact he's outright gleeful when he sees it's "only a little one."