#223 -- Fright Night (2011)
Director: Craig Gillespie
I was kind of hesitant about this one, because I really enjoyed the original. That being said, it really wasn't as bad as I feared. I know a lot of people probably hate it, but I'm not one of them. The difference, I think, is that I didn't grow up with the original. I didn't see it until I was probably around sixteen, so I don't really have any emotional attachments to it. I'm not saying the remake is better than the original, because it's not even close. I'm just saying that it really wasn't all that bad. I had a couple of problems with the movie, mostly the characters, but for the most part, it was okay.
My biggest problem was the relationship between Charlie and Evil Ed. In the original, they were best friends. I could tell that they hind the kind of relationship that I had with my best friend in high school. The rip-your-head-off kind of best friends, but they're there for each other when the time comes. But in this one, they weren't friends at all. They had been friends at one point, but Charlie abandoned Ed to get in with the popular crowd. Amy was one of the hot girls, but she wasn't annoying. I actually liked her better than the original Amy, because she was a strong female character. But Charlie was a cool guy; he wasn't the dorky kid we remember from the original. Ed was still a nerd (he was played by Christopher Mintz-Plasse, who was McLovin'), but he was kind of an asshole, and he wasn't as awesome or silly as Stephen Geoffreys. It was Ed who believed that Jerry was a vampire, not Charlie. Charlie thought he was nuts, and it wasn't until Ed disappeared (because he was changed really fast) that Charlie started to believe him. I didn't like Jerry as much, either. Sure, Colin Ferrell is much better looking than Chris Sarandon, but that didn't make the character more likable. Jerry, in the original, was a classy fellow. He was polite, and he pretty much stayed to himself until Charlie started digging around. In this one, he wasn't afraid of letting people know what he was. And he was kind of a whore. When Charlie caught up with Peter Vincent, I wasn't too fond with the direction they took with him either. I liked Peter in the original. Here, he was a sort of Criss Angel wannabe, and he was a drunk whore too. He was really quick to believe Charlie's story, unlike the real Peter Vincent, who took quite a bit of convincing (and for a while only pretended to believe to appease Charlie).
So, the only characters I didn't really have a problem with were Charlie, Amy, and Charlie's mom. Charlie was different, but not really in a bad way. I liked the dorky Charlie, but cool Charlie wasn't bad. Amy and Ms. Bruster were cool chicks, and I didn't have a problem with them at all.
Even though I had some problems with how they changed it, overall, I didn't think it was that bad. It still had a little bit of humor, though not nearly as much as the original. It didn't have the awesome cheesy gore, like the original either. I did think that Jerry's true vampire form looked better in this one (I really didn't like how he looked in the original), but Amy...Amy was fucking awesome in the original. When she transformed, it was weird and terrifying. They tried to keep it that way in this one, but it just didn't quite work as well. This one didn't have quite as much charm as the original did, but I can't really fault it for that. The '80s was a decade full of awesome horror movies, and they just cannot be copied.
It is absolutely impossible for me to watch remakes and pretend they're not remakes. I can't look at them as if they're original, because they're not. So, I don't even try anymore. I have to compare the two. So, did I think the remake lived up to the original? Not by a long shot. But as far as remakes go, it really wasn't all that bad. I've definitely seen worse (like A Nightmare on Elm Street, for instance). I would choose the original any day.