The premise of this bitingly amusing film is that Max Schreck (Dafoe), the actor who played the vampire in director F.W. Murnau's 1922 horror classic Nosferatu, got the part because he was, in fact, among the undead. Murnau, a notorious perfectionist, seeks realism from Schreck but grows furious when the vampire gets too enthusiastic, killing off crew members in mid-shoot.
Shadow has clever fun exploring how far an artist will go to achieve his vision. Dafoe is the show here, greedily flicking his tongue in anticipation of the tasty treats his performance will bring. (R)