Critic Reviews



Based on 16 critic reviews provided by
A concrete horror flick that burns with consequence, ignited by strong characters who are far more tested in their experiences than anyone of similar age. Bloody, emotional and visualized with a damning spirit – what an outspoken genre manipulation for first-timer Michael O’Shea.
While death by bloodsucking is very much a factor, this is actually a subdued, contemplative drama about the lingering trauma of grief and the efforts of an introspective teenager to invent an invulnerable persona to shield and ultimately release him.
Native New Yorker Michael O’Shea makes an impressively confident directorial debut with The Transfiguration, a vampire movie that looks, feels, walks and talks like a gritty US indie flick.
Village Voice
The Transfiguration gradually reveals itself to be a coming-of-age tale, one whose central figure reaches a point at which he’s forced to reckon with the evil lurking within himself.
Mr. Ruffin must carry the film, projecting interior activity and suggesting information where the script (by Mr. O’Shea) does not. That he imbues the film with a weight greater than its words is a testament to his skill as an actor.
The problem is that, for all of its cinematic merits, there’s something strange about this particular vampiric parable.
The film is at its strongest when navigating the story's uneasy relationship to its genre.
Where the film runs into some difficulty is in sustaining its initially very promising mood of incipient violence. Withholding revelations can be an effective strategy, but it’s perhaps slightly overused here, as the result feels ever so slightly dry.
The tone is mournfully serious and this contrasts with the inherent silliness of vampires. Milo, with his glazed expression and apparent absence of affect utterings, is a compellingly dour presence but doesn't prove quite enough to prop the film up alone.
The Transfiguration is a character study first and foremost, spending all of its time with Milo. Problem is, he’s so opaque that as a protagonist, he’s completely impenetrable.

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