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In an attempt to woo the kiddie crowd who haven't been de-sensitized by Scream 1, 2, and 3; The Little Vampire tells the story of nine-year-old Tony Thompson who recently moved from big-city America to a remote Scottish village with his parents. Since his arrival, he's been plagued with nightmares about vampires. While his parents admonish him to look for activities that will get him thinking about anything else, Tony has little to turn to.
Constantly ridiculed and bullied for his vampire fascination, Tony's life takes an unexpected turn when young Rudolf, a real vampire, drops into his bedroom one night thinking Tony may be a distant relative. But when Tony removes his fake vampire teeth, Rudolf becomes apprehensive about being alone with a human. Understanding what it's like to be different, Tony makes his newfound friend more comfortable after finding him a cow to snack on.
With their relationship continuing to grow, Tony discovers Rudolf's family and many of their fanged friends are dying to become humans. Using Tony's dreams to guide their search for an ancient stone that will accomplish the transformation, they must stay out of the light and sight of Rookery (Jim Carter), a vampire hunter with a menacing truck, glowing cross, and endless supply of wooden stakes.
The script tries to emphasize that people who hate are far more dangerous than those who are simply different, but parents may instead find a story that teaches children to seek refuge within occult themes and practices. Watching the stereotypical bad-guy Rookery continually attempting to kill the vampires is neither funny nor exciting, and the inclusion of these scenes only manipulate children into rooting for the blood-sucking crew.
With a script free from profanity except for a couple of terms of deity used as exclamations, parents' main concerns may deal with the movie's themes including occult-like ceremonies and the use of Christian crosses to ward off vampires.
Otherwise this bland movie tries to use a little fright to teach some right, but surprisingly, is short on bite.
The Little Vampire is rated PG: for some mild peril
Cast: Jonathan Lipnicki, Jim Carter
Studio: (pictures (c)2000 New Line Cinema)