After realizing his next door neighbor is a vampire, a teenager
tries to destroy it with the help of a Vegas magician/vampire killer.
Fright Night (2011)
Directed by Craig Gillespie
Written by Marti Noxon
Starring Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, Imogen Poots,
David Tennant, Toni Collette, Christopher Mintz-Plasse
Remake of 1985's Fright Night
The Fright Night remake has no business being as good as it is. Most horror remakes completely miss the mark and disgrace the original, but very occasionally, you get one like this. A remake that honors the original, does its own thing, and stands as a solid horror flick all by itself. While obviously not as perfect as the original vampire classic, 2011's Fright Night has a great cast, a smart script that's not a straight rehash of the first one, and some grisly creature effects. It's everything a remake should be.
The story is pretty much the same. Charley Brewster (Yelchin) discovers his new next door neighbor Jerry (Farrell) is a vampire. Jerry catches on immediately and tries to kill Charley, his mom (Collette), and his girlfriend Amy (Poots). With nowhere else to turn for help, Charley goes to famed Vegas magician Peter Vincent (Tennant, who steals the show), who is actually a drunk, washed-up has-been with nothing to lose. The idea to place the story in Vegas was brilliant. Everyone works at night and sleeps during the day, and the population is mostly transient. It's a vampire's hunting ground out there.
Fright Night 2011 adds enough new stuff to the table to work as its own feature that isn't tethered to the original. But there's still enough there to celebrate the first film's legacy. You've got a great cameo from original Jerry, Chris Sarandon, and a few repeated lines here and there. It's a rare horror remake that works, and if it had to be anything, I'm glad it was Fright Night.