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29

TUESDAY

In spite of the fact that Roman Polanski attempted to remove his name from the American cut, there is still much to recommend about The Fearless Vampire Killers or: Pardon Me, But Your Teeth Are in My Neck. In this horror-comedy, Polanski displays a flair for high camp that, for the most part, wouldn’t properly surface until his reviled Pirates, at which point most critics suggested that it might be best for said flair to remain submerged. Vampire Killers finds the director himself playing the skittish assistant to absent-minded Professor Abronsius (Jack MacGowran), who traverses wonderfully artificial snowscapes (straight out of a Rankin/Bass Claymation Christmas tale) in search of the dreaded bloodsuckers. Polanski’s claustrophobic framing and an eerie score by frequent collaborator Christopher Komeda help give weight to this otherwise fluffy Goth romp. But nothing lends gravity to the film like the presence of the impossibly pulchritudinous Sharon Tate, for whom the term “ill-starred” is woefully inadequate. The Fearless Vampire Killers screens at 7 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Pickford Theater, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5677. (David Dunlap Jr.)