It’s no secret that my favorite genre of film this horror. But I’ve never been a fan of horror comedies especially the ones that put too much emphasis on the comedy and come across as satirizing the horror or down playing it at the very least.
Fright Night is one of those rare movies that does blend the two in a way that’s not disrespectful to the horror but still true to the era it was released.
The first thing I noticed is it definitely has an 80s vibe and it does in fact poke fun of the popular slasher genres of the time while also playing homage to a variety of Horror tropes. It had elements that reminded me of the Monster Squad with traces of Gremlins 2 and even a little smidgen of Once Bitten thrown into the mix. The movie was the right blend of satire, homage and horror comedy just scary enough to qualify as legit horror. Not crossing the line like something Shaun of the Dead would do but staying true to the spirit of the vampire lore.
The movie had a couple of moments that did make me cringe but not for the reason that you would probably think. I’m perfectly happy with the 80s cheesy Vibe it fits into the movies I grew up with it is definitely a movie I would have enjoyed had I seen it in my youth. But I’ll talk about the disturbing things in a minute let’s just go through the movie piece by piece.
First and foremost it is a vampire movie and it makes no bones about it this movie is intended to be in the Canon of vampire films. It takes the genre seriously while also poking a little fun. The two main characters are likeable for the most part the mom is sort of a throwaway character and the friend who doesn’t believe in vampires comes off as a little annoying. But perfectly in line for the 80s teen character.
The vampire hunter in the movie is probably both one of the better characters but also one of the weakest links. What I mean by that is the character definitely comes off as making tribute to Horror Movie hosts of TV shows that would show B movies back in the day. A TV host of a failed show also washed-up Hollywood actor perfectly in line with that type of character. What I mean by this person being the weakest link however is the actor is known for being in more comedy roles than serious roles and it’s a little jarring. That would be like trying to take a legit vampire movie seriously where Chevy Chase is the vampire Hunter. It’d be very difficult to do.
The atmosphere of the movie is a little mixed there are parts of it where it is a 80s teen I don’t want to say comedy but definitely Adventure film. And then there are elements that are straight up horror pure vampire movie although not as scary as I would have liked. And the movies Gore level is definitely not what I want my vampire movie. But it’s comprable to something like the monster squad or even the lost boys so it works there enough. Probably the best part of the movie because it is an 80s film is the music especially the nightclub scene.
My biggest complaint is it moves a little fast and some places in a little slow and other places throwing the pacing off a little bit.
special effects are certainly a relic of their time but they look perfectly fine. And the overall plot is exactly what you would expect from a movie of this nature at that time. More than adequate perfectly acceptable. Even the comedy doesn’t go too far and work as intended.
Now let’s talk about the two things as promised that are the biggest issues with the movie. issue number one is none of the characters really feel very fleshed out the motivations appear to be superficial mostly along the lines of just do this because the script says so.
the other issue I have with the movie is something that isn’t even a relic of the time but it’s sort of a plot point that doesn’t really get explored. The female teenager who gets stalked by the vampire has a very sensual vampire love scene turning scene near the climax of the movie problem is the man in this movie is clearly middle-aged and she’s just a child at 15 established earlier in the film which can certainly come across as problematic especially in today’s climate. It was perfectly in line with what was established in the movie but it felt a little weird when it unfolded.
Overall I would recommend this movie to any fans of the horror genre or vampire movie. It’s one of the rare movies that you could classify as horror comedy that I think works well. Just don’t expect a list performances from the actors because you won’t get it. But it’s still a good fun time all the way around. I would rate it 4 out of 5 stars very enjoyable film.