“Fright Night” is just the latest in a never-ending parade of 80s-era remakes. Surprisingly, it holds its own with its predecessor. The movie stars Anton Yelchin (the kid who played Chekov in the Star Trek reboot a few years back) as Charley, a high schooler living in the outskirts of Las Vegas with his single mom (Toni Collette). As the movie opens, there have been a rash of disappearances in the area. Charley, however is so obsessed with moving on from his geek past and cementing his relationship with his hottie girlfriend Amy (Imogen Poots) that he thinks nothing of it. Just as he thinks nothing of the new neighbor Jerry (a deliciously dangerous Colin Farrell in full on predator mode) who lives next door.
Jerry appears to have some interesting habits. He’s never seen in daylight for starters although this is understandable when he claims to have a night job in construction. All the windows of his modest suburban home are blackened out to keep out the sunlight and help him sleep during his off hours. And seriously, WTF is with that dumpster in the driveway?! These characteristics make Jerry unique to his unsuspecting neighbors, but to Charley’s former best friend Ed (Christopher Mintz-Plasse; aka McLovin) these are tell-tale signs that Jerry is in fact a vampire. However, Ed’s warnings go unheeded and before long, Ed joins the ranks of the disappeared.
With his childhood friend now missing, Charley now begins to think that maybe his new neighbor isn’t what he seems. To confirm his suspicions, Charley goes to visit illusionist Peter Vincent (Doctor Who ‘s David Tennant) who is initially reluctant to help but soon jumps in headlong to aid Charley in his mission to slay the bad guy and save the world (not to mention his girl).
Bottom line; this movie is FUN. The moments of terror are properly counterbalanced with moments of hilarity. I personally was happy to find a vampire movie in which the monster wasn’t a whiny emo kid with bad hair and sparkly skin. Colin Farrell succeeds in making Jerry a monster who is equally sexy and terrifying which is exactly what a vampire should be.
David Tennant in particular stood out from his fellow cast mates. I was familiar with him from Doctor Who, but in this scenario, removed from the persona of The Doctor, Tennant manages to be equal parts funny, regretful, and (dare I say it?) sexy. He injects the character of Peter Vincent with humor mixed with generous helpings of melancholy. Yet at the same time, there is an element of lounge lizard to him that creates a noticable sex appeal that one hasn’t seen in his other, more family friendly, roles. Then again, maybe I just like hearing him say “fuck” in that accent….
One important note: this movie is rated R for a reason. Anyone under 17 needs to stay the hell out of the theater. Parents, if this is your choice for dinner and a movie night, fine. Just find yourselves a sitter so that you do not become the douchebag parents who bring a noisy kid to a movie which is EXTREMELY age inappropriate.
All in all, Fright Night is a great time at the movies. It is funny, scary, and sexy all in one deliciously high energy package. It’s a pure entertainment thrill ride that makes a serious attempt to undo the damage done to the vampire genre by the Twilight series. Vampires are sexy dangerous fun again, thanks to Fright Night.
By Q101.com Blogga “MShowalter”
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