Fright Night (1985) (Eureka Entertainment) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Drew Marvick
Starring: Alexis Adams, Sally Burnswello, Nick Byer
Rated: 18/Region 0/2:35/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from Eureka Entertainment
Meet Jerry Dandridge. He’s sweet, sexy, and he likes to sleep in late. You might think he’s the perfect neighbor. But before inviting Jerry in for a nightcap, there’s just one thing you should know. Jerry prefers his drinks warm, red and straight from the jugular! It’s Fright Night, a horrific howl starring Chris Sarandon as the seductive vampire and William Ragsdale as the frantic teenager struggling to keep Jerry’s deadly fangs out of his neck. Only 17-year-old Charley Brewster (Ragsdale) knows Jerry’s bloodcurdling secret. When Charley can’t get anybody to believe him, he turns to TV horror host Peter Vincent (Roddy McDowall), who used to be the “Great Vampire Killer” of the movies. Can these mortals save Charley and his sweetheart Amy (Amanda Bearse) from the wrathful bloodsucker’s toothy embrace? If you love being scared, Fright Night…will give you the nightmare of your life.
Oh, the year of 1985! While I was far too young to remember it personally (I was just two at the time) I’ve got enough merch from that year and seen enough movies from then to know it was a heck of a year! One surprise box-office hit that year was the vampire flick Fright Night! I movie that I’m willing to bet caught a lot of attention due to the cool name. What the film packs is some good gory fun that is majorly lacking into today CGI-ridden world. Charlie gets a little too nosy when he gets new neighbors and finds out that the person living next door is actually a vampire and even worse is the person responsible for some deaths in the area. Charlie tries to tell his friends, his mother, and the cops but nobody believes him! So finally he tries to enlist the help of a TV vampire killer Peter Vincent to help fight off the evil that is now after him! First off I want to point out that I love the character of Peter Vincent just as much as I hate the character of Evil Ed. Vincent who as you would figure, doesn’t believe Charlie at first either, is having a constant inner battle during the film of trying to be just what he has played on TV for years and what he really is, a scared man. It’s a lot of fun to watch and brings on some pretty funny moments.
The character of Ed (Evil as Charlie calls him) is very very annoying and I actually didn’t enjoy the film as much when he was on the screen. I could tolerate Charlie’s girlfriend Amy even when she kept on whining but I guess the annoyance of Ed could have been the point. I just wish they had of toned that kid down a bit. While our main bad guy, the Vampire Jerry Dandrige comes across as a very cool bad guy and foil to Charlie, Evil is just annoying as hell..there’s no other way to put it. Some have called this film over-rated and I can at times see their point. The plot may be kinda silly and one could wonder if a powerful Vampire like Jerry wouldn’t just go for the kill instead of playing around with Charlie but if he did that we wouldn’t have much of a movie would we? I honestly find the first half of the film to be a little dull at times but I more than think the film makes up for it during the second half. And what a second half it is. We have vampires, werewolves, and tons of cool natural gore without a trace of CGI! It was just 1985 after all. We even have a man take shots directly to the head and keep coming at our heroes on top of all of that! To put it in a simple term, the second half of this movie is a lot of 80’s style fun. Fun that gets topped off with a pretty well-played wink-wink ending that gives you that good 80’s feeling. Remember, I may have only been two when this came out but I still had plenty of the 80’s left to get old enough to remember the time fondly! Maybe this wasn’t The Lost Boys, but it was pretty darn good. Even if some of the plot around the end fails to make some logical sense. Eureka from the UK put this out on a Blu-ray/DVD combo that is not only region free but packs great extras like I’ve listed below. It even has the Fright Night 1 related portion of the documentary called “You’re So Cool Brewster” which is awesome to have on the release.
– 4Kdigital restoration
– Original stereo PCM soundtrack and 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio options (on the Blu-ray)
– English subtitles for the deaf and hearing-impaired
– You’re So Cool, Brewster! A new two-hour version of the definitive 2016 documentary on the making of Fright Night, focusing on the first film, created exclusively for this release
– What is Fright Night featurette, a 2016 video piece featuring cast and crew interviews (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– Tom Holland: Writing Horror, a 2016 video piece featuring interviews with Holland and his collaborators (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– Rowdy McDowall: From Apes to Bats, a 2016 video piece featuring archival footage of McDowall and cast and crew interviews (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– Fear Fest 2 2008 reunion panel featuring Tom Holland, Chris Sarandon, William Ragsdale, Stephen Geoffreys, Amanda Bearse, Jonathan Stark and moderated by Rob Galluzzo (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– Shock Till You Drop Present Choice Cuts with Tom Holland and Ryan Turek, a three-part video interview on the film (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– The full electronic press kit, featuring extensive on-set interviews and behind-the-scenes footage (BLU-RAY ONLY)
– Stills and memorabilia from Tom Hollands personal collection (BLU-RAY ONLY) | G-rated and R-rated theatrical trailers (BLU-RAY ONLY)
Quality of Transfer: 100%