Monday, September 12, 2011

another vampire movie?

So a few weeks ago, my mother and I had a hankering for a movie so we basically went with whatever was playing at 7 (Mom has a rule about seeing movies past 10). The film we ended up seeing was Fright Night 3D. Now, unfortunately, I still can't really understand the logic behind making everything 3D. Though it seems to be used as a market ploy to attract audiences, the only films that seem to get away with it are either really badass movies like Harry Potter or something really silly like whatever latest Disney 3D movie came out (Cars 2? no?). Long story short, I'm not a big fan of the 3D thing.

Now at first I was hesitant to open myself up to this film because I thought it would be like Twilight/Blood and Chocolate/True Blood/The Vampire Diaries/(insert vampire movie here). However, I was pleasantly surprised with Fright Night. Not so much because of the 3D but more because of how much I didn't really mind watching it in3D. In fact, it kind of recalls campier 3D movies of the 80s but does it one better.

The basic plot of the films consists of what happens after Charley Brewster, a native of Los Vegas, discovers that his neighbor, Jerry, is a vampire.

Interestingly, instead of the audience pulling out their hair for an hour and a half while the protagonist tries to find a way to convince the people around him that there's a monster who lives next door, this film has everyone believe him from the get-go. This made the experience more like rooting for a sport team than getting pissed off at how stupid everyone is. The audience was really excited for him to conquer the vampire (well, at least me and my mom were, we were the only ones in the theater...not an uncommon occurence...).

But even more than cheerleading for the good guys against the bad guys, this movie relates more to a teenage audience than even Twilight does. Or, probably more accurately, if Twilight applies to girls, Fright Night would apply more to boys. It's less about emotions and more about growing up. The main subplot of the film is basically Charley learning how to be an adult and still maintain his true personality. In the beginning he shrugs off his old nerdy friends for guys that are friends with his girlfriend, only to realize later that they're total assholes. Only later does he find out that his girlfriend already likes him for who he was before. Not only in terms of message, but also in terms of entertainment value, Fright Night blows Twilight out of the water. Probably one of the funniest characters in this film, showman turned vampire-hunter Peter Vincent (David Tennant) carries the majority of the laughs although Ed (Super Bad actor Christopher Mintz-Plasse) has quite a few moments himself.

On another level, though, this movie does get pretty creepy. Even more in tune with a boy audience, Fright Night strives to wipe away the angelic view of vampires that the latest trends seem to be pushing. Far from being glamorous (although, let's all admit, Colin Farrell is far from hard on the eyes) the vampires look like demons when they reveal themselves. When Jerry's true self is revealed in one of the final scenes, his face looks more like an demon's than a human's, with rows of teeth and blind rage.

All analysis aside, though, the show is pretty entertaining. Comic relief follows those intense moments of quiet that happen so often in scary movies and Yelchin is believable as a nerd-turned-popular kid. Also nice to see Farrell acting in a part that's so intense. He's terrifying as the creepy vampire neighbor and then even more so when he is on a rampage later in the film.

Four outa five.

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