09
Nov
13

Fright Night (1985)

Suburban voyeurism can be quite dangerous when your neighbor is a vampire!

Suburban voyeurism can be quite dangerous when your neighbor is a vampire!

Watching too many horror movies can make you a little paranoid. I’m pretty sure I can blame the movies for my jumpy nature, or the fact that every time I’m in the country, or the woods, or a dark alley in the city, I’m waiting for a monster or murderer to come along and ruin my day.

Sounds like me and Charley Brewster, the hero of Tom Holland’s Fright Night, have similar problems. Only for Charley, there actually is a monster, and he’s right next door! But poor Charley has enough trouble convincing his girlfriend Amy to sleep with him, how will he get her to believe there’s a vampire living in the next

Peter Vincent and his bag of props

Peter Vincent and his bag of props

house over? Amy and Charley’s pal Ed think Charley’s just been watching too much of Fright Night, a television show featuring old-timey horror flicks, most of which star the show’s host, Peter Vincent (Roddy McDowall), a once well-known, but now washed-up horror actor.

It doesn’t help things that Charley’s new neighbor Jerry Dandridge (Chris Sarandon) is too damn charming for anyone to believe he’s a monster. But Charley thinks if he can only get Peter Vincent to help him kill his neighbor, all his troubles will be over! Shame, though, Peter Vincent doesn’t

...but Jerry Dandridge isn't impressed!

…but Jerry Dandridge isn’t impressed!

actually believe in vampires, he’s just an actor. But after pleas from Amy and Ed, Mr. Vincent decides to do what he does best and act like he believes, all in hopes to save Charley’s supposedly fragile sanity.

This movie is fantastic. The casting is pretty much perfect: Chris Sarandon never fails me, he is so darn good at playing a winking bad guy! I love it, and I love him! And watching Roddy McDowall’s incredulity grow as the show goes on is pretty great, too. But even without them, this movie would still be awesome; it has just the right balance of humor and scares to make for the most enjoyable horror cocktail.

It is totally beyond me why anyone would feel the need to remake this movie, and with Colin Farrell no less! Admittedly, I haven’t seen it; why would I bother when this one is so spot-on? But I must say that I’m curious if it carries over the original’s intent and attitude. I have this sneaking suspicion that it doesn’t…

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