“Fright Night”, while entertaining, completely misses the mark as far as vampires are concerned. Frankly, “Fright Night” is downright offensive to vampires. And I’ll tell you why.
There are so many things wrong with this movies take on vampires that I’m not sure where to start. I guess I’ll begin with the casting. Anton Yelchin plays Charley Brewster and he’s not a vampire. I know what you’re thinking, given his age he’d be the obvious choice for the forever young immortal. Meanwhile, Colin Farrell plays Jerry and he is vampire, even though he’d be perfect in the role of an antagonist that doesn’t understand vampires and thinks that they are evil. Unfortunately, Farrell’s portrayal of Jerry is just too off putting.
The plot of the movie revolves around Charley Brewster, a high school senior that discovers that his neighbor, Jerry, is a vampire. For some reason, the people behind this movie have made a critical error in their depiction of vampires. They’ve decided to make Jerry an evil, predatory vampire that actually feeds off of people, isn’t sensitive and brooding, and doesn’t love baseball. So Charley actually fears his neighbor and decides that he has to destroy him. Brewster decides he needs more information and decides to see an expert. He goes to David Tennant, who is reprising his role as the Tenth Doctor from the popular BBC sci-fi show “Doctor Who”. Sure, they never come out and call him the Doctor, instead he’s using the alias of Peter Vincent, but you can tell he’s the Doctor because he’s still awesome. Honestly, it was a pretty bold choice to have the Doctor in a secondary role, effectively making the first feature length, American “Doctor Who” movie what would be considered a “doctor-lite” episode of the show. Among the many ways “Peter Vincent” says that vampires can be killed is sunshine. That’s right, now sunshine is lethal to vampires, so you can tell that they’re just making this up as they go.
This movie could have been great if they hadn’t mischaracterized vampires. They tried to go for horror, and while there are some good “jump” moments in this film, vampires just aren’t meant to be frightening. This could have been so much more had the vampire been the misunderstood protagonist trying to survive in a world where people fear him due to ignorance, thus providing great social commentary. Instead we get vampire slander. But don’t just take my word for it, go see it for yourself. Seriously, see it, while it’s still in theaters. I recommend you see it so you can understand how far off it is from the way vampires really are, such as how they’re portrayed in the magnificent “Twilight” saga.
Final Rating: B+
Travis “Team Edward” Kennedy