Fright Night 1 (1988)

If you are sitting where you are having a déjà vu feeling all over your body well, guess what? You’re damn right you are. Happy Halloween Retro space cowboys! This month’s haunted house begins with Fright Night 2.

Charley Brewster has been through a lot. His mother was threatened, his best friend was murdered and transformed, his girlfriend seduced and transformed and he was almost murdered by his next door neighbor, who happened to be a vampire. The aftermath of this traumatic experience has left Charley ostracized and unsure of what he knows actually happened.

Now living on campus and keeping up with his scheduled sessions with his therapist. Charley is almost cured of his PTSD. His girlfriend Alex is cute and smart with a great head on her shoulders. Peter Vincent is still hosting his late night Horror movie showcase on local television.  All is going well until, one night when he spots new residence moving in the late night hours.

Vampires are after Charley and company, once again.

A family of vampires, that resemble an 80s new romantic band, have taken the guise of eccentric artists take move into Charley Brewster’s neighborhood. The leader, Regina is a “vampire” performing artist; a great cover for a bloodsucker. She has her own intentions for the small town and specifically for Charley Brewster.

The film is good. You know this. I know this. We’ve all been here before [wink wink]. The practical special effects hold up, even by today’s standards. The music is helmed by returning composer Brad Fiedel (The Terminator, Blue Steel, The Serpent & the Rainbow, True Lies, Johnny Mnemonic).

Directing duties were helmed by Tommy Lee Wallace (Halloween III), yup – that guy.   

William Ragsdale & Roddy McDowall return to reprise their roles as Charley Brewster and Peter Vincent and Co-Starring Julie Carmen (Mouth of Madness, Night of the Juggler), the lovely Traci Lind, Jon Gries, Brian Thompson, Ernie Sabella, Josh Richman and Blair Tefkin.

Fright Night (1985) was the second highest-grossing horror film of 1985 only surpassed by Nightmare on Elm Street 2 and earned 25.9 million at the box office. Fright Night 2 only earned $2,983,784 domestically. Now the question is… Why didn’t it do so well? The reason it didn’t do as well as the first film is because New Century/Vista only gave the film a limited domestic release, which handicapped the success of the film in matching the original.

I enjoy both films. I have only seen the recent remake once. And I haven’t had any interest in watching the sequel to the remake. However, If this shows up on my cable guide listing you can bet that I’m going to watch it if not record it.

Highlights for me are: the dance sequence, the bowling scene, Traci Lind.

So strap in Retro-maniacs. This is the first of a few Halloween themed articles I’m unleashing upon you this October.  So beware, be afraid and keep your fingers on that rewind button.