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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

Fright Night

1985 | United States | 106 min | More...
A still from Fright Night (1985)
A+: 5 stars (out of 5)
on Sat Oct 31, 2020

During a late-night make-out session, a suburban teen sees two men carrying a coffin into the neighboring basement. Intrigued, he spies on the nightly goings-on next-door, only to discover his suave new neighbor—played by Chris Sarandon—has fangs. Desperate for help, he turns to the local creature-feature host, an aging horror star played by Roddy McDowall.

McDowall channels Peter Cushing in a love-letter performance that reimagines the Van Helsing archetype as a vulnerable, reluctant hero whose self-discovery arc gives the film an unexpected resonance.

Opposite McDowall, Sarandon is all sensual charm and sociopathic calculation spiked with a streak of black humor. I’ve seen this film countless times and struggle to name a horror villain performance I enjoy more. The script gives him all the best lines and Sarandon delivers them with such relish, his performance never fails to make me smile.

There are scarier, more intense, and more important horror films. But none are this much fun.

Viewing History

    Watched on
    Tue Sep 28, 2021 via Blu-ray (Sony Pictures, 2019)
    Watched on
    Sat Oct 31, 2020 via Blu-ray (Sony Pictures, 2019)
    Watched on
    Sat Aug 22, 2015
    at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema - One Loudoun
    Watched on
    Mon Jul 30, 2012 via Blu-ray
    at The Black Cat
    Watched on
    Sun Jul 08, 2012 via 35mm
    at AFI Silver
    Watched on
    Sat Jul 07, 2012
    at AFI Silver (35mm)
    Watched on
    Sat Jan 28, 2012 via Blu-ray