Saturday, September 3, 2011

Review: Fright Night (2011)

With all the other remakes that are happening, it is easy to let Fright Night slip under the radar. Not only is it a remake, but it is in 3-d too. It's as if it doesn't have enough not going for it so then they threw in McLovin, Dr. Who, and Colin Farrell's bangin bod. And well, somehow it works.

Fright Night is a remake of a 1985 horror comedy by the same name. The film follows Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin) who begins to believe that his new neighbor Jerry (Colin Farrell) is a vampire. With the assistance of Charley's best friend Ed (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), his girlfriend Amy (Imogen Poots, best name ever), and a magician of the occult (David Tennant), Charley tries to solve the mystery.

I only saw the original Fright Night (1985) last year so I can safely say it holds up over time. It's a great horror comedy with some crazy makeup and iconic one liners, but really, let's be honest here, what it was obviously missing was a 100-year-old beefcake. In the remake, Jerry the vampire, went from Count Dracu-blah to Calendar Hottie, which makes me believe that this film is marketed towards a very specific group of people. Teenage girls. Sure, the main character isn't a rip-off-your-shirt werewolf, but he does look like average boyfriend material. He's thoughtful, he's nice to his mom, and he wears the appropriate flannel and ironic t-shirt combo.
But then, there is his neighbor. The charming, mysterious, nonsparkling, ancient as crap vampire. What's a girl to do? 

I also like that unlike most horror movies, this one cuts to the chase. This vampire doesn't spend half the movie playing cat and mouse, he's a goddamn predator, and he's been alive long enough to know how to win the game. That's right ladies, not only is he gorgeous, he's smart too. I swear, if I were in this movie, it would go something like: he approaches me, I let him bite me, and we get nonsparkely married. THE END and a sequel. Bottome line, he's not your average horror villain, which is refreshing.

This dreamboat does lawn work too
It's easy to heap praise on Colin Farrell in this film (he could probably easily bench press like all of it anyway), he really rises to the occasion with a nice blend of campy and threatening. You can tell he really understands what this film is all about. Oh yea, I also have to mention that McLovin is in this movie. I don't know what people find so appealing about this guy, but everyone I have talked to who doesn't usually like horror movies was intrigued by the appearance of McLovin, because you would think he would be the character who would deliver the most laughs, which is not so. The character who made my audience laugh the most was the magician's assistant/girlfriend. She walks around half naked and delivers some great wisecracks. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the magician. The midori drinking magician whose character is obviously a mix between Cris Angel and Russell Brand is played by David Tennant, or for all you nerds, the new old Dr. Who. He is also a great character who is acted really well, but doesn't have enough cheesy one liners for my taste. 

While I don't believe that I will ever watch this movie again, I must say that it was fairly enjoyable. It updated the classic 1985 version in unique ways by changing the setting to the already bizarre Las Vegas, but it also stayed true to the lightness and fun of the original. I think it's sort of a forgettable movie, but I enjoyed the experience of watching it so for that I give it a medium score. Plus, for my little girl heart, it has Lisa Loeb in it! She plays McLovin's mom for 5 seconds.

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