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Fright Night
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Reviews & Ratings for
Fright Night More at IMDbPro »

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Fright Night had a few good moments but is mostly flawed.

Author: FanPerspective from United States
4 September 2011

When seeing a remake, it is very difficult to get the original film out of your mind; you compare every little detail as you watch. In some cases, you actually forget the original and enjoy the remake because they did some patch work that really improved the film as a whole and better developed the characters. Fright Night, however, did not live up to its 1985 origins. Don't get me wrong, I didn't hate it as much as I thought I would... there were actually some new twists I found to be pretty clever. Overall, though, I feel like it failed to live up to the original film (of which I am a big fan) and had there not been an original and this stood on its own... I feel like it still wouldn't have played out so well.

The story centers on high school student, Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin), who begins to sense that something isn't quite right about his new next door neighbor, Jerry (Colin Farrell). When Charley's best friend Ed (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) goes missing after trying to convince him that Jerry is a vampire, though, Charley's suspicions rise and begin connecting the dots surrounding his neighbor and the string of recent disappearances. With no one to believe his vampire theory, Charlie attempts to enlist the help of self-proclaimed vampire slayer, Peter Vincent (David Tennant), to help him take Jerry down.

While the producers were able to wrangle a pretty decent list of actors for the film, it all just felt horribly miscast. It may sound like a contradiction, but while giving pretty good performances... hardly any of the actors felt right for the characters they were portraying, especially Farell who made for a lousy vampire. Yelchin was probably the most convincing of all, which was good because his character had to carry the story.

As was with the original, the film did manage to keep a good sense of humor about itself. I do think it did a good job of building up a looming suspense throughout and keeping the tension high. It very quickly became more an action-comedy than a horror flick, but it did manage to get in a few unexpected and even frightening moments. Unlike the original, though, the writing was very shaky. I felt like it was trying to walk the line of keeping true to the original and at the same time define itself as its own, which made it a bit sloppy at times.

Director Craig Gillespie relied a bit too heavily on CGI for certain aspects, such as the transformation into a vampire or squirting blood that was just as bad, if not worse, than the CGI we saw a few years ago in I Am Legend. It just didn't mesh well with the reality of it and almost made you laugh it was so poorly done. The 3D aspect wasn't really needed here. There were a few gimmicky moments for it during the more climatic scenes, but most of the film didn't need it. I will admit that it adds a nice depth to a scene, but still not worth the extra money.

So, while I didn't totally hate it... I didn't totally love it either. I will say that I enjoyed certain moments of it, but overall it was one of the countless classic films that should have been left alone because the original still hasn't gone out of style yet.

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Well security is a little lax since everybody got their throat torn out.

7/10
Author: Spikeopath from United Kingdom
1 July 2012

Fright Night is directed by Craig Gillespie and written by Tom Holland. It stars Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, David Tennant, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Imogen Poots and Toni Collette. Music is by Ramin Djawadi and cinematography by Javier Aguirresarobe. Film is a remake of the 1985 film of the same name, also written by Tom Holland, it sees Yelchin as Charley Brewster, a teenager living in a suburb of Las Vegas who finds the new handsome neighbour, Jerry Dandridge (Farrell) is actually a blood sucking vampire. With nobody believing him and the vampire homing in on his mother and girlfriend, Charley turns to enigmatic playboy magician Peter Vincent (Tennant) for help.

Ah remakes, a word that often spells trouble in film fan circles, especially when populated by the horror faithful. So no surprise, then, that Fright Night has been met with much division whilst hardly making waves at the box office (it made a small profit when various costs wee taken of the gross). Yet it did receive some favourable reviews in critic's offices, where like myself they feel that this more than lives up to the original, which was fun and scary but hardly what you call a horror comedy masterpiece. I often have my rose tinted spectacles on for the likes of the 85 Fright Night, but whether we choose to accept it or not, they were real fun films back then, but because they were viewed through younger eyes. Now when viewing in the haze of nostalgia, it's not hard to see why some modern film makers feel a remake is possible and can work; Fright Night is one such case.

This is no masterpiece either, it drags for the first third and the CG malarkey really doesn't offer anything particularly worthy to the film's substance. In fact the transformation sequences are quite frankly, weak. You don't have to be a nostalgist to lament the absence of a Bottin or Baker. But for all its little missteps, it still rounds out as great fun and scores high in the last third with the well blended mix of comedy, suspense and terror. The dialogue, too, is very enjoyable, with many lines bringing the chuckles. The casting is very good, particularly with the core three characters of Charley, Jerry and Peter. It's great to see Farrell having such fun, free of emotional character restraints, he just lets rip with a sexy and vengeful performance. Yelchin is just so likable, a rising blockbuster star after turns in Star Trek and Terminator Salvation, here he crafts top work as Charley shifts from geeky teen into babe magnet bravado. While Tennant slots in and steals the movie with a glorious excess of profanity, sexuality and witticisms that befit the nature of the piece.

Next up Farrell is going serious and threatening to run the wrath of sci-fi fans with his star turn in the Total Recall remake. He comes out of this horror remake, like the film in general, with good credit. So those 80s teens like me, should shake off the dust and strap themselves in to a seat for this particular ride. It may not surpass the original, but it is every bit its modern equal. And that is something that newcomers to the Fright Night world should hopefully rejoice in. 7/10

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Poor remake lacks the "bite" of the original...CGI is at its worst...

5/10
Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.
28 December 2011

FRIGHT NIGHT has two saving graces: Anton Yelchin, who plays Charlie Brewster with the right mix of humor and a good grip on his character, and David Tennant who plays the TV vampire destroyer with a good deal of cultivated arrogance and outlandish attitudes.

Beyond these performances, the rest of the film is only mildly successful in the casting. Colin Farrell is a disappointment in the role that Chris Sarandon played to perfection as the original "vampire next door" type with a lot more sexual heat than Colin exhibits in an underplayed style. And even back in 1985, the special effects were a lot more horrifying than those employed here which represent CGI at its worst.

But most of all, the entire script has made drastic changes in the story that "for better or worse" are strictly for the worse. Fans of the original film will hardly recognize what has been done to the story, much less the characters.

However, Toni Collette as Brewster's mother and Imogen Poots as his pretty girl friend are excellent, given what material they have to work with, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse gets some comic relief from the Evil Ed character that he becomes after "the bite." In this case, his Evil Ed is much less effective than the one in the original film.

So many of the key scenes are played in virtual darkness, making it impossible to see what is actually going on at important moments in the action sequences. This is way below standard for a horror film that is supposed to be scaring the audience realistically.

Summing up: A waste of time and money. See the original and you'll understand why I lack enthusiasm for this remake which attempts to be stylish and cool and full of rough language.

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

This movie AT BEST is a Rental

Author: quadlings from Tennessee
23 August 2011

You've seen the scary vampire! You've seen the sexy vampire! Now presented for your boredom Colin Farrell is the "Dateline:To Catch A Predator" vampire!! (He comes off seriously creepy, but not in a good way.)

Loved the original, BUT they ruined it. They've done the usual 2000's vibe where everything has to be cool. You lose all the cheese of the 80's and replaced it with douche baggery.

My ratings for a movie are - Opening Night- a MUST SEE! - Theatre Watch- watch the following week(s) - Lazy Day Kill- When there's nothing better to do and you're killing time - Rental- Not worth seeing at the theatre, just rent it! - Saturday Preview- It may be worth wasting a lazy day at home over

This movie AT BEST is a Rental. Do not pay full price for this crap! And if you're going for McLovin you may also be rather disappointed in the character.

I recommend staying home and renting the original :-).

And if you read ANYWHERE how scary it was... the person must be under 8 years old. Telling you...save your money!!!

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8 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Flawed, but fun and spooky update of the classic

6/10
Author: sgtking from United States
23 December 2011

Many of us have gotten burned out on movies with vampires. Of course Hollywood overusing a concept is nothing new. It was done in the 80s with slasher films, but these days it's gotten out of hand. Remakes, sequels, vampire movies, and zombie movies are rampant. So it's no surprise that the 1985 Horror/Comedy 'Fright Night' has been redone for the new generation. Now some of these remakes have actually turned out better than expected. Others are completely forgettable and you wonder why they even bothered. The good news is that this one is better than average. It's just not something that'll have the same kind of longevity the original has.

Pros: Great work by the cast. Good, moody score. Eerie atmosphere. Quick pacing. Some of the effects work is quite good. Some really effective shocks. Ups the stakes by a lot. Some cool homages to the original.

Cons: Some underdeveloped characters. Awkward dialogue, mainly in the first half. Some of the CGI really doesn't measure up. Attempts at humor don't always hit the mark. A bit predictable.

Final thoughts: If compared with the original, this film just doesn't come close to matching it. However, on it's own it's a fun and edgy undead flick that should put a smile on your face and liven up a dull day. And like '30 Days of Night,' it gives us vampires that don't mess around.

My rating: 3/5

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8 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Fewer laughs and less chills than 1985

Author: davidgee from United Kingdom
7 September 2011

Excellent 3D in this (especially when executed vampires explode into sparks which come right up to your nose!), but it's a pointless remake of the 1985 version. Colin Farrell has screen presence but Chris Sarandon made a more charismatic and scarier vampire. Anton Yelchin is nothing special as teenage nerd Charley, and David Tennant's reworking of the reluctant vampire-hunter has none of the engaging quality that Roddy McDowall had. This re-vamped (oops!) Peter Vincent has a very potty mouth and the grunge look of violinist Nigel Kennedy.

The 1985 version had a pacier script, more suspense and (without the 3D) better special effects. This comedy-horror has fewer laughs and less chills. I hope there isn't going to be a remake of THE LOST BOYS.

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24 out of 47 people found the following review useful:

Awful Remake of the 1985 New-Classic

1/10
Author: Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
14 January 2012

The Tom Holland's 1985 "Fright Night" is one of the most charming films of the cinema history. The story is funny and the humor is witty, with the handsome Chris Sarandon performing one of his best roles and William Ragsdale, Amanda Bearse and specially Roddy McDowall hilarious. In summary, the 1985 original film may be considered a new classic, worshiped by a legion of fans.

This teen remake is simply awful, with explosions, car chase and a cynical and charmless Colin Farrell in the role of Jerry Danridge. People who have positively voted in this garbage have certainly not watched the original film. My vote is one (awful).

Title (Brazil): "A Hora do Espanto" ("The Fright Hour")

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Another Hollywood Rip Off.

5/10
Author: Bloodmarsh Krackoon from United States
25 July 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Did 'Fright Night' really need to be remade? Absolutely not. The original still holds up very well. However, this average remake does try to hold it's own by not completely ripping off the original, so I'll give credit where it's due. Chris Sarandon's 'Jerry Dandrige' came across as a reasonable guy doing what he had to do to survive - but if you stand in his way, well, you know what happens. Colin Farell's version is more like a serial killer killing anyone and everyone in his territory. This is a nice change, since Colin doesn't have what it takes to portray Sarandon's version. Colin is the bigger name, and probably the all around better actor, but some parts are simply made for certain actors - and there's only one 'Jerry Dandrige.'

As for the rest of the cast - again, probably the all around better cast of actors, but they just don't have the chemistry the original cast had. David Tennant receives a lot of the credit from fans, but it's really Colin Farrell who keeps 'Fright Night' afloat.

Random Rambling's of a Madman: While Colin Farrell will never be 'Jerry Dandrige,' he did come across as a guy having a good time, and never taking himself or the role too seriously. If he had taken the serious route, things could have gotten ugly. Why the guy hasn't taken the next step, is beyond me. He's a capable actor - looks the part, but I'm sure there's something personal holding the guy back.

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This Movie is Kick Ass!

10/10
Author: Seb Brady from Oregon, Wisconsin
1 June 2015

Okay let me start off by saying this movie is kick ass and way superior to the 1985 version. For one instead of the movie being cliché and have the family move into a bad neighborhood(Fright Night 1985), the family is moving into a bad neighborhood. Secondly, Collin Farrell as the Vampire in this movie was like the greatest thing to happen to this movie instead of the boring/Emotionless vampire in Fright Night 1985. Thirdly, this movie has really great acting throughout the film. There was not one actor who I hated in this film. Fourthly, this movie is so damn scary and suspenseful but is also really funny at times, unlike the 1985 version where I was not laughing, scared or even feeling a bit of suspense. All in all, this movie is the superior Fright Night film and I had a lot of fun with it. I would definitely recommend this and watch it over and over again!:)

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Great remake of two vampire classics

9/10
Author: Tony Hernandez from United States
19 May 2015

This 2011 version of the latter-day classic _Fright Night_ is as good a time you will have watching a vampire movie these days. The cast is great, the direction fast paced and the script witty and reverent at the same time. And, while it is a remake of my favorite vampire movie of the 1980s, it is also pays homage to the best American vampire movie ever, _The Night Stalker_.

While Charlie Brewster is getting the week-willed Peter Vincent to help him save Amy from Jerry Dandridge ("Jerry the vampire!?!"), the movie is also quoting pretty liberally from that classic 1972 Darren McGavin/Richard Matheson masterpiece. The new Fright Night shares a setting (Las Vegas) with the McGavin movie. But more importantly, the first half of the long sequence when Charlie searches Jerry's house and becomes a believer is an almost shot-for-shot quote of McGavin's suspenseful search of the vampire's house at the climax of _The Night Stalker_.

Of course, the new movie has its own payoff to that scene, one that elicits a shudder and a laugh. The laugh comes from the fact that we should certainly have seen that payoff coming, but the suspense of the action just prior has thrown us off guard. This scene, like most of the effects shots, works even better in the original 3D.

There are many other pleasures to this movie, including solid performances by Anton Yelchin, Imogen Poots and Toni Colette as the frightened but sophisticated protagonists. Colin Farrell is able to pull off a modern version of the Dandridge character, sexy in a rougher, sweatier way. He may not have the gravitas of Chris Sarandon, but Charlie is right to be wary of this guy, vampire or not.

David Tennant and Christopher Mintz-Plasse steal the show. Tennant updates Peter Vincent by turning McDowell's kindly but cowardly gentleman into a drunken primadonna, Simon Cowell as vampire slayer. And Mintz-Plasse's Evil Ed is hilarious in nerd mode and vampire/nerd mode. His longing for a lost friend is very real and makes his fate all the more touching.

If you have not seen this, check it out. For some reason it did not do well at the box office, but it is the perfect antidote to the sparkling vampires and cuddly werewolves of recent years.

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