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Fright Night
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Fright Night More at IMDbPro »

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18 out of 34 people found the following review useful:

At least the vampire has a heart, but this movie...

Author: aharmas from United States
11 August 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Tom Holland's original is so much fun because its heart (no pun intended) is in the right place. It's a campy, funny, and scary tribute to the movies and stories that inspired it. Each of the main characters feels real, with his or her own identity. The film takes its time exploring and developing each character, and by the end we care what happens to them.

Of course, having McDowall and Sarandon in the original was extremely important to give the film the right tone. Colin Farrell is perfectly cast in the new ones, yet he literally sleep walks through film because not much is expected from him but to snarl and mock both his prey and the audience, and he'd better make sure to stand in the right place, so that the 3-D effect can be properly showcased. It's really a terrible waste because he does have a dangerous presence, and he certainly fits the image of a player. His best scenes have him challenging and taunting his victims because he knows how much more powerful he is.

Sadly, everyone else in the film is a caricature, from Charly's best friend to the Vegas Vampire Killer, with his own set of demons. In fact, there is much that is NOT explained, and we are just supposed to eat it up. Great actors are wasted, some decent special props and special effects are definitely underutilized, and as everyone knows by now, there is just something special about the vampire lore, with its ritualistic killings, its ties to immortality and sexuality, and what amazing adversaries they can be. As I said before, Farrell is probably better than Sarandon in the lead role, but there is not much for him to chew.

A final note on the use of 3-D. It wasn't really necessary since there was so much more than could have been accomplished with a tighter, better developed script and director who would have thought a little more of his audience. This film is the equivalent of those disposable plastic fans that annoy both the person who wears them and those of us who have to look at them.

Pretty dull entertainment.

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19 out of 36 people found the following review useful:

Absolutely Pathetic Remake

2/10
Author: maraven12 from United States
20 August 2011

IT was a pathetic attempt to include scenes and pieces from the original fright night, but at the same time, incorporate a more unique storyline and character development. A 12 year old could have directed something with more flow. It jumps from the beginning with opening chars, then in 15 minutes, rushes to the actual idea that he is a vampire. Colin Farrell must have hated making this movie b/c he did not do nearly a good job as a vamp. Peter Vincent character is a retarded comic relief that makes no sense to the film at all. Its a half-breed retard who tries to be funny and then some. I never seen a more pathetic film that tried to throw everything into one movie. It is a retarded , piece-mewled film that was not worth a movie ticket and wont be worth the time to watch FREE on TV.

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25 out of 48 people found the following review useful:

One good performance can't make this a good movie

5/10
Author: Tim McNeil from Forest Park, Illinois
19 August 2011

It took me a while to see the original Fright Night (1985). I had one of those mothers who tried to impose her own uneasiness with the horror genre on her children. Actually, she held crazy beliefs like that KISS stood for Knights in Satan's Service and Rush (the Canadian prog-rock band) meant Ruling Under Satan's House and is still afraid to watch the movie Jaws (1975). I'm pretty sure the first time I saw Fright Night '85 it was on cable television. I soon went out and and rented it – and its inferior sequel – and found a movie I really liked. It had the right amount of camp and humor, but it was the slow build to the horror element that made it, to me, a classic.

Don't expect that from the new version. Fright Night '11 takes the same basic premise, but has none of the fun with it. Marti Noxon – the Queen of Mean – transplants the Angelus character from the Buffy/Angel Whedonverse and hands the role to a more talented actor in Colin Farrell. Let me make this perfectly clear: if you are going to see this movie, Colin Farrell is the reason to go. He does truly embody the inhuman menace of the shark from Jaws, but is somewhat hampered by the direction and editing that occasionally sets him up as a vampiric Pepé Le Pew. Though largely robbed of any kind of a backstory or motivation beyond being a vampire – and what little we do get to learn about his kind mostly goes to waste – Farrell does his best to make this movie work.

The problem is that he isn't enough.

Anton Yelchin, an actor who has yet to impress me in any role I've seen him in, is the lackluster lead. We learn that he is the kind of man who would betray his friends and hang out with assholes in order to score a tasty girlfriend, but still nerdy enough to not be able to close the deal. Seemingly, a mere ten minutes – it may have been a little more or less – Yelchin's Charley Brewster is already aware (in a way) that vampires are real. That sucks all of the tension out of the ensuing scenes and helps get the leaden feeling of the movie going. Yelchin does have a couple of good scenes, but he – or director Craig Gillespie – doesn't know what to do with them.

Instead of giving an actor as good a role as they did with Roddy McDowell in the original, David Tennant (as Peter Vincent) is required to start off with what looks like a Ben Stiller impersonation of Johnny Depp in any of the Pirates movies. There is too much unpleasant self-loathing in this new Vincent to make him accessible. He is a pompous coward – which could have worked – that never really is given a chance for redemption; it is up Charley to do that, too.

Imogen Poots (as Amy) and Emily Montague (as Ginger) make for attractive and mildly compelling potential victims of the vampire. Both seem to have unreasonable faith in the Charley character, though this is a problem with the screenplay and not the acting. Much less effective are the other potential victims that wander about the film. Most are disagreeable and unlikeable, and in the case of Dave Franco seem to be too old to fit into the film's high school age group characters. Toni Collette (as Charley's mother, Jane) is largely wasted. She looks good and should be a calm, capable, strong woman that has given Charley his moral compass and conviction. Instead, she is quickly turned into just another potential victim and is removed from the third act in an unsatisfying way (though, to be fair, it does work in the overall story). Chris Sarandon makes an appearance – my one lone laugh of the night – as does Lisa Loeb (???).

The film looks bland and uninspired, and that isn't due to the special effects. The FX work, almost without exception. It is the sets and landscape that robs the movie of any sense of life. Watching a cookie-cutter, Las Vegas McMansion in an oddly isolated subdivision burn provokes no reaction from me, except that many built unwisely during the housing boom. There is no vibrancy to the movie, and that is a problem.

I cannot comment about the 3D. There was a problem with the projection during the previews, and while it was resolved to the point of where it wasn't just blurry, most of the effects that were in 3D never really popped. Some are obviously meant to, and if they do it will add more to the experience. Other than those flashy (and repetitive) sequences, there are only three or four shots that effectively make use of the technology (no, I am not counting the crossbow bolt shot seen in the previews). Gillespie does a great job with one particular shot in a swimming pool early on, then seems to degenerate into some level of amateurism with his shot selection. This is his first feature, and in retrospect, it looked as though he wasn't ready.

My suggestion is to watch the original Fright Night (1985) instead of the cynical, cold-hearted '11 Fright Night. The new one isn't horrible, but like a vampire, it has no life of its own. Colin Farrell is great in what he is allowed to do (I never thought I'd ever write a sentence like that), but the rest of the cast is subdued and improperly handled. This is a solid C effort, but I would have like to have seen a more accomplished director – and definitely no Noxon influence – for this movie.

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78 out of 154 people found the following review useful:

This rip-off remake should never have been made in the first place.

1/10
Author: NightOwl0 from United States
10 August 2011

I had the grave misfortune of attending an early preview screening for this piece of garbage. The audience I saw it with was less than enthused as well. I credit them with having some actual taste. I must disclose that I am a fan of the original film. In fact in the pantheon of great vampire movies I feel that "Fright Night," stands tall as one of the best ever. It's a very clever idea for a vampire film and the original characters are a lot of fun. The original film is in many ways a love letter to horror films and horror fans. The main character in the original is a horror fan, his friends are horror fans and he idolizes Peter Vincent who is the host of a late night horror movie show. The film was post modern and gave the audience credit for having some kind of prior knowledge. Now we are confronted with this brain dead remake. It is hard to know where to begin in explaining how awful this new film is.

We can start with the sad fact that the very essence of the original characters, their arcs and their dynamics have been changed almost completely. The main character, Charlie, is now a self-absorbed and selfish jerk. Charlie treats his much more intelligent friend Ed like human waste. Charlie has a hot girlfriend and is hanging out with a much more popular crowd. Ed's intellect and peculiarities set him apart so of course Charlie has to drop him as a friend. When a movie starts off and your protagonist is a fake and hateful cretin it is a serious problem.

Then there is the character of Evil Ed himself who is unfortunately played by Christopher Mintz-Plasse. Mintz-Plasse has now given the exact same tiresome performance in God knows how many movies. In the original film Ed was a tragic character. In this one he is at best an annoyance.

The main problem with the new characterizations lies in the re-imagining of Peter Vincent. He is now a Las Vegas magician who prances around like Russell Brand and almost seems like a complete afterthought in the film. Vincent's arc in the original movie was touching and central to the narrative's success. In this new incarnation he hardly drives the film at all. Like every other poor decision made by the filmmakers, the casting of David Tennant is merely a stunt to draw the geek crowd in. He might as well not even be in the picture.

Colin Farrell is not a disaster as Jerry Dandridge, but he is hardly a success either. Chris Sarandon's portrayal was sly and full of little touches that really sold the implicit threat of Dandridge. Farrell is a very obvious actor and he gives a very obvious performance in this movie. His character is really more of a serial killer/sexual predator than a true master vampire. As the movie progresses he goes steadily over the top and seems less and less threatening for doing so. By the time he is chasing Charlie, Charlie's mom and Charlie's girlfriend on a motorcycle he might as well be The Terminator. His supernatural abilities rarely if ever come into play.

The film has zero atmosphere and barely comes to anything approaching excitement. Product placement is rampant and so frequent that it becomes hilarious. The fun, new-wave Gothic feel of the original film has been replaced by a slick treatment more befitting a luxury car commercial. There is no edge to this movie. The computer effects are terrible and poorly rendered. The editing is desperate and the gotcha moments are lame in the extreme. I was so bored watching it I resorted to checking my watch every few minutes to see when the ordeal would be over. If you are thinking about viewing this abomination I would suggest streaming the original on Netflix or watching it for free on Hulu. Your time would be better spent and you will not have wasted thirty dollars or more on crappy, post-production 3D.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078

7/10
Author: Tss5078 from United States
28 February 2014

I am not a fan of remakes, because rarely, if ever, do they do justice to the original film. That being said, I wasn't expecting anything out of the Fright Night remake, except for a cameo by Chris Sarandon. I was however pleasantly surprised, as the young cast was better than expected. For those who don't know the story, it is a classic vampire tale. Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin) is a normal teenager, whose life revolves around High School and his beautiful girlfriend. Everything is perfect until an old friend tells him that his new neighbor is a vampire. At first Charley doesn't believe him, but the more he watches, the more he realizes that something isn't right. Anton Yelchin opposes Colin Farrell, and while he might not have the name recognition, he easily outshines the veteran actor. Yelchin has a cult following among fans of teen movies, after strong performance in films like Charlie Bartlett and Middle of Nowhere. As with most teen idols, his popularity is not just about his looks, it comes from his smooth relaxed style of acting, that people can relate to. Yelchin's characters are always real and honest, the kind of guy audiences can easily relate to, and that's what makes him as good as he is. Yelchin has help in this film from an all-star cast that includes, Farrell, Toni Collete, Christopher Mintz-Plasse-Mclovin, Dave Franco, and of course the original vampire, Chris Sarandon. The combination of chemistry between new and veteran make for a truly powerful cast, that bring new life to this classic story.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

I would say better, sexier nd more interesting than twilight series..

7/10
Author: sai kiran from India
5 December 2013

1st: Colin Farrel was sexy and awesome... he really suits in a vampire character.. I wonder y EDWARD is voted DA sexiest but Colin was too hot in his role.. next the girl who played Anton Yelchin's gf was also cute nd sexy.. and I didn't watch the older version but this is a cool popcorn flick to watch wid UAR friends. u'll definitely luv it guys... Dnt believe in the oldie's reviews who saw DA previous version of it and say the older one was better... :D 1.twilight has no kinda mother sentiment.. but dis one has it.. 2.Colin was great in all aspects than Robert... 3.Bella had no expressions.. Amy in dis showed a lot variation... my friends loved it. u'll love it too.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

A worthy remake

8/10
Author: moviefanman76-blogspot-com from United States
14 August 2013

Tom Holland's Fright Night (1985) is one of the few vampire film's the non-Twilight fans enjoy. Not only did have good make-up effects for its time, but it also had likable characters and a contemporary plot that audiences had never thought about before. And because of its success, three years later spawned Fright Night Part 2 (1988), which like many sequels had a diminishing return but still had a strong following. Jump to 25 years later and we have the remake that I can't say everyone wanted to see, but for the people who were tired of the Twilight series, definitely had something different to watch here. Especially for those who never saw the original to begin with.

The plot is the same as the original, a teenage boy, Charlie Brewster, figures out that his next door neighbor is a vampire and soon finds out the vampire is out to get him, his friends and family. Remember though, for any of you readers who saw the original, this is a remake so not every scene will be done the same. For example, instead of Charlie discovering the vampire on his own, a classmate friend of his tells him. This is just one of several differences between this film and the original. But that's the only difference - the scenes, and Marti Noxon did a fine job at writing the screenplay. After all it's not her first time writing a story about vampires. Noxon also wrote the story for Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1996). Besides, everything else is kept relatively the same from characters, to effects and gore.

Playing Charlie Brewster is Anton Yelchin, an actor who has been filling the shoes of several famous characters now like Kyle Reese from the Terminator series, Chekov from the Star Trek series and now this. Yelchin is convincing as a teenager because he has the baby face to prove it, plus his voice isn't that deep. Playing the charismatic Peter Vincent (the famous vampire slayer) is David Tennant, who also gives a performance that is much enjoyable for his sarcastic attitude. Surprisingly, even Chris Sarandon, the original vampire from Tom Holland's classic, has a brief cameo. Watch out for him, his screen time isn't long.

But if there's one character that tops them all, it's Colin Farrell's performance as Jerry, the vampire next door. The best parts are when Farrell makes his character act like a human being. The movements, mannerisms and smooth voice make him one slippery little devil. In fact, one could say that Farrell had a lot of fun with this role because of how much he smiled in every frame. Some of the scenes that he plays in are actually quite comical, even though the movie's basis is the horror genre. But there will be times where you can't help but laugh because of how awkwardly hilarious the situation may seem.

However, if there was one thing that didn't help Farrell look more like a vampire was the CGI special effects. When the vampire face of Jerry takes over it doesn't look as real as it should be. I don't know, perhaps I wasn't expecting a whole facial reconstruction when he decided to transform. He honestly didn't even look like a vampire to me, which just made him look fake. The gore and blood was there but that was also mixed too. There were some scenes where it mixed well with real objects and then there were other scenes where it look like it was added in last minute. That should have been skimmed over a little more I think. The music was great though. Ramin Djawadi's score had a main theme and contained a lot of strings and organ sounds which are key in creating horror music. Well done.

The remake to the 1985 vampire flick is a fair match to its original. The music is appropriate, and actors perform well, especially Colin Farrell. The special effects may look unfinished though.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Is solid and a hit

7/10
Author: alex wolfman from United States
12 August 2013

wish I had seen the original Fright Night from 1985. Usually you don't watch a remake until you see the original but with Fright Night it was different for me. This remake of Fright Night is one of the few films that I liked that is aimed towards my (teenage) age group.

With the same idea as the original, a teenager finds that his neighbor is a vampire. With many ideas involving teen themes, this turns into survival story in the Las Vegas area.

Unlike most remakes which usually have bad casts, this film is just the opposite. Known actor Anton Yelchin is the lead with rising stars Christopher Mintz-Plasse and David Franco in supporting roles. Established star Colin Farrell plays the villain who is a vampire let loose into a cast full of teens. The vampires in this movie are of an old style and not like the modern vampires of recent movies and I appreciated and liked this.

The Las Vegas setting provides cool hip scenes as well as some desert scenes which is kind of different for the horror genre. The movie also has an ending that puts everything into perspective and closes the film very nicely. All of this makes this film really stand out.

Fright Night is solid and a hit. I think it is one of the top remakes ever.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

refreshing remake, good cast, eerie vibe... nice

8/10
Author: brunothepitt
1 August 2013

vampire movies, zombie movies and horror movies are kinda popular in recent years. don't get me wrong when u need your fix its not hard to find something to tickle your fancy cause there are some decent ones out there. however at the same time many movies of this genre appear similar and predictable almost to the point where it seems the writer and producer has simply just wrote an average script with average ideas, added some monsters, looked for a scary set and added a creepy soundtrack. the original fright night was a horror movie from the 80's( i think) and was totally different to the other horrors we used to watch. our grandad used to make us watch the old black and white ones but this was modern and in colour..lol. the film was memorable because of the story, cast and it was eerie and spooky. very watchable so when i heard about the remake was curious and hoping they wouldn't mess this one up even though that would of been tough as the story so good. kudos they didn't.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Actually Quite Scary!

9/10
Author: g-bodyl from United States
14 March 2013

Fright Night, the 2011 remake of the 1985 film, is actually a really good film that features lots of thrills and chills. These days, I fear any vampire movie that is released will end up being just like a Twilight film. I'm glad to report that this film features vampire violence, gore, and very little romance which is the total opposite of the Twilight films. Granted, I have not seen the original film but I this is a good stand-alone film and one that most horror fans should enjoy.

This film is about a mysterious stranger who moves next door to the Brewster family. It turns out that this neighbor, Jerry, happens to be a member of the supernatural family. When he becomes a threat to everyone they know, Charley Brewster hires a vampire professional to end the threat.

I feel really bad for Colin Farrell. When he puts up a great performance, no one goes out to see him. Unfortunately, Mr. Farrell is a box office disaster as this film was. But, he was really good as Jerry. He blends together a mixture of comedy and horror to make a very memorable character. David Tennant is really good as the vampire professional because he is pretty funny.

Overall, this is a great film that may be better than the original. This is not a one hundred percent horror film which is great because I'm not a big horror fan. This film has plenty of comedy and with a dark premise, that addition is welcome. This is one of the better vampire films made within the past decade. I rate this film 9/10.

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