The New Fright Night

We watched it last night with the Red-Headed Kid, who hadn’t seen the original or its sequel. How he could have worked in a video store for nine thousand years and missed the Fright Night movies, I just don’t know. I didn’t have the heart to ask him if he’d seen The Lost Boys.

That would have made me feel way old if he hadn’t.

Anyway, the Butcher and I love the Fright Night movies and probably watched them a hundred times when we were young. So, we were nervous about the remake. Would it have the right mix of genuine humor and horror?

And it did!!!

It was awesome. Plus, like Super 8, the parent–Toni Collette, who looks throughout the whole movie, like she’s just having a blast–doesn’t suck and isn’t just ignoring her kid or oblivious to the fact that there’s something wrong. The part where Jerry comes over to talk to her about how her son’s been harassing her and her son begs her not to talk to him and she finally tells him to go to the authorities then is just not the kind of thing that would have happened in horror movies (or scary movies, like this, which is not quite a horror movie) back when I was young.

I think it’s interesting that the kids in those horror movies have grown up to be different kinds of parents than the parents they had in those horror movies.

I mean, it makes me wonder about the whole “Parents just don’t understand” phenomenon. I mean, it was a joke, but it was also a real source of anxiety for us, obviously, considering how much of our popular culture told stories about parents who side with other adults over us.

And now, we’re seeing another type of parent in the horror movie–still sometimes clueless, but honestly on the child’s side.

Do we believe something different about ourselves as parents than our parents did about themselves as parents–since it’s always adults who make the movies? Or was that trope, in the end, too horrible for us to keep using?

I don’t know.

I just thought it’s interesting to see the shift. And welcome.

2 thoughts on “The New Fright Night

  1. I loved the original “Fright Night”. I didn’t watch the remake, because I was so afraid of being disappointed.

  2. I would say that, of all of the remakes of movies from our youth, this one does the best job of both trying to capture the way the original made you feel, sticking close to the basic plot points, but also updating it in ways that feel fresh.

    It felt to me like a movie that had a lot of understanding and respect for what made the first Fright Night so great.

    It’s not better than the original, but it is better than most movies like it.

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