Though not a masterful flick, the 1985 horror-comedy Fright Night holds up as a fun mixture of mid-level scares and witty humor. It’s also an obvious choice for a 2011 remake, with its vampire storyline fitting nicely into Hollywood’s current obsession with the suave bloodsuckers (see: True Blood and Twilight).
When the inevitable reboot was first announced, the casting of Colin Farrell as the neighborhood vamp signaled a red flag; handled with mucho swag by actor Chris Sarandon in the ’85 original, “Jerry,” the same character Farrell plays, requires someone who’s equal parts charismatic, funny, and menacing. While some may disagree, we’ve never looked at Ferrell in such a light.
Now that the first trailer for Fright Night 2011 has debuted, though, he’s the least of our worries. Whereas the original basked in its subversive humor, the remake’s preview seems more concerned with generic scares played completely straight. The tone is light in the beginning, but near the end the trailer seems to abandon most of what made the ’85 film work.
It’s not a total drag, but Fright Night’s first official look hasn’t exactly filled us with excitement. Hopefully initial looks are deceiving in this case, and the actual movie strikes a better mood. We’ll find out on August 19, when Fright Night, directed by Craig Gillespie (Lars And The Real Girl) and also starring Anton Yelchin, Toni Collette, Imogen Poots, and Christopher Mintz Plasse, hits theaters.