By Sean McQuillan

Genre: Comedy, Horror

Rating: R

U.S. Release Date: August 19, 2011

Run Time: 120 Mins

Cast: Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, David Tennant, Toni Collette, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Imogen Poots

Director: Craig Gillespie

Producer: Michael De Luca, Alison R. Rosenzweig

Screenplay by: Marti Noxon

Based on: Fright Night by Tom Holland

Personal Rating: Ehh, It’s a Matinee

In a quiet and secluded Las Vegas suburb, Charley Brewster finds out that this next door neighbor is behind the rash of disappearances of his friends.  When his best friend shows up and explains that Charley’s neighbor is in fact a vampire, things get crazy real fast.  Can Charley keep his mom and girlfriend safe while facing down an evil centuries in the making?

I did not go into Fright Night with high expectations, it is a remake after all, and it seems Colin Farrell is behind a few of them (I’m looking at you Total Recall). I was expecting a fun campy vampire B-movie, and for a while I wasn’t sure I was going to get one.  With an agonizingly slow first half, and extremely dark camera work, I was wondering exactly when it was going to start getting good.  It does pick up the pace and has a fun and satisfying second half and, without spoiling anything, it does start it off with a bang.

I know I mentioned Colin Farrell with a degree of disdain, but he does well as the slimy and predatorial Jerry.  Of the cast of early twenty-somethings playing teenagers, the highlight is certainly Christopher Mintz-Plasse.  Many would recognize Chris from Kick-Ass or Superbad, and he’s just as good as ever here.  The true gem of casting is David Tennant as the lothario magician/vampire slayer Peter Vincent.  Every scene with Tennant is solid gold and sadly, we only see him for half of the movie.

Since this Fright Night is a remake of the 1985 movie, some may wonder how it compares.  I feel they stayed faithful to the tone of the original.  Fright Night has always been a good bridging piece that moves the vampire movies into a more modern setting while paying homage to its classic roots.  Both the old and the new seemed to save all of their excitement for end, but it you can wait for it, it’s a satisfying climax.

Fright Night is a remake of a great B-movie, and would have been easily forgettable if it wasn’t for David Tennant’s hilarious performance. You could easily see the movie just for him and get your money’s worth, otherwise I’d recommend watching the original.


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