Fright Night

PLOT:

Charley Brewster is a huge fan of horror films until he discovers that his new next door neighbor Jerry is a blood sucking vampire. Upon discovering this new fact,Charley tries and turns every which way he can for help. Including telling his mom, asking his friends for their help, calling the police and turning to vampire-hunting hero, actor Peter Vincent. All of them turn him down until Peter Vincent discovers that Charley’s cries for help were real and now Jerry is becoming aware of the fact that Charley knows what he truly is. His girlfriend Amy hires the money-desperate Peter Vincent to “prove” Jerry is not a vampire by having him ingest holy water (really tap water.) Charley, Amy and Peter arrive at Jerry’s house with their friend, “Evil” Edward. The plan works perfectly, but fails to convince Charley. In fact, Peter Vincent accidentally discovers Jerry’s true nature after noting his lack of a reflection in his pocket mirror. With this new information, Peter flees – but Jerry already learns of Peter’s discovery after finding a piece of his pocket mirror on the floor. He hunts down and converts Edward into a vampire, who unsuccessfully tries to attack Peter. Jerry then enchants and spirits away Amy – who bears a resemblance to Jerry’s lost love. With nowhere left to turn, Charley goes to Peter Vincent a second time. Peter initially refuses but then reluctantly brandishes his “Vampire Killer” role as Charley approaches his neighbor’s house. Despite a rough start, the two are able to repel Jerry’s attack using a cross – though only Charley’s work, since he – unlike burned-out Peter Vincent – has faith. Peter seemingly kills Edward after leaving him with a stake in the heart, while Charley finds Amy already in the throes of a vampire transformation. Peter is sure the process can be reversed – but only if they kill Jerry before dawn. The two kill Jerry’s carpenter – revealed to be a Frankenstein’s Monster-like creature complete with green blood and sand. Brandishing a cross without faith a second time, Peter is able to lure an overconfident Jerry in front of a window – just before the morning sun lights him ablaze. Jerry flees to his coffin in the basement, while Amy completes her transformation and attacks Charley. By breaking the windows in the basement, however, Peter and Charley are able to kill Jerry once and for all in a monstrous explosion. Amy returns to normal, and later that night, Amy and Charley finally make love. Peter Vincent comes on the TV and announces a break from vampires, instead selecting an alien slasher movie. Charley takes one wary eye out his window before returning to Amy. The last shot shows two red eyes in the darkness, followed by Evil Ed laughing sarcastically “Oh, Brewster, you’re so cool!”

REVIEW:

 I remember being in elementary school, going to a friend’s house one weekend and watching this film. Back then, the gross out effects that occur at the film’s end did scare me a bit. However, years later, now that I’m in my adult years, it didn’t phase me one bit, but I do have a nostalgic yearning for this film. Maybe it’ll become a Halloween tradition for me, along with The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown.

The plot here is your typical vampire moves in next door, so the nerdy next door kid gets all paranoid. This puts his friends and family in danger. If only he would have left well-enough alone. Some people never learn, do they?

While I didn’t care for the story, it did have its moments. However, it seems as if this has all been done before. I was just hoping for more.

I applaud their choice to not have the vampire, Jerry (what kind of name for a vampire, is that?), use all his forms…bat, mist, wolf…although, I didn’t quite get what was up with the ridged Klingon face. Now that I think about it, I remember the vampires on Angel and Buffy, the Vampire Slayer having that same look, so maybe this is where they got it from?

The effects are great for a film of this era. The green slime is very reminiscent of the good old days of Nickelodeon.

The cast is nothing special, but if there is one that stood out, it has to be Jonathan Stark as the mysterious henchman/carpenter. The whole film, we wonder what this guy is, since he’s obviously not a vampire, based on his ability to be out during the day. I read somewhere that he was supposed to be some sort of Frankenstein-type monster, but I still wonder.

Steven Geoffreys’ character, “Evil” Ed wasn’t bad, but that voice got on my nerves.

Amanda Bearse was almost hot here…a far cry from her Married…with Children days.

Fright Night is a nice bit of nostalgia. It really is a shame they’re bastardizing it by doing a remake. On this Halloween, though, I figured it would be the perfect time to revisit an old memory, and it did not disappoint. No, it isn’t a great film, but it is a fun flick to watch. Why not check it out sometime?

3 1/2 out of 5 stars

One Response to “Fright Night”

  1. […] at a time that wasn’t Halloween. I can’t remember what else was shown, but I know that Fright Night was shown either before or after this. I didn’t get the chance to watch for whatever reason, […]

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