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Film: Fright Night (2011)

Fright Night (2011) is a remake of the cult 1985 horror-comedy hit, starring Colin Farrell, Anton Yelchin, David Tennant, Toni Collette, Imogen Poots and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. It drops the Peter Vincent Becoming the Mask story and turns Charley into a Buffy-type character, with Jerry resembling both Spike (suave and cool) and Angelus (loves to kill and psychologically torture his victims), and Peter as a Vegas showman instead of a former actor.

Despite under-performing at the box office, the film has turned out to be a critical success.

In late 2012, a direct-to-video sequel was announced under a different studio to be shot in Romania. It was later announced that the sequel would be a remake of the original film (and remake of the remake) with Charley, Amy, Peter and "Evil" Ed coming back, with Jerry Gender Flipped as a woman named Gerri.

The film features the following tropes:

  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Charley goes from being the Action Survivor to a slayer who gets his own Lock and Load Montage.
    • Jerry Dandridge BLOWS UP YOUR HOUSE.
    • Even Amy and Charley's mom are upgraded. The former uses a flail and silver bullets, and the latter uses a realtor sign as a stake.
  • Affably Evil: Jerry. He even continues to act casual and make small talk while attacking his prey. May border on Faux Affably Evil, but we're given little reason to believe this isn't his true personality.
  • All Is Well That Ends Well: Peter lost his girlfriend, but that's okay! We have proof and a whole group of witnesses/victims who can prove vampires exist.
  • An Axe to Grind: Charley wields a battle axe one during his battle with vampire Ed. He also is seen holding a normal one on the poster to the film.
  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other:
    • Peter and Ginger have some highly entertaining friendly bickering. Her death is the final push that Peter needs to stop hiding and start fighting.
    • Same for Charley and Ed, as Charley looks devastated after he's forced to stake Ed.
  • Badass Longcoat: Part of Peter's standard stage attire. He also wears it during the assault on Jerry's house.
  • Big Bad: Once again, Jerry is the head vampire and the one Peter heads to stake to thwart the Evil Plan.
  • Big Eater: Amy, who admits to having an insatiable appetite after asking Charley about dinner before even finishing a smoothie that looks too big to even fit in her stomach.
  • Black Mail: Ed threatens to reveal some awful truths about Charley's past.
  • Call Back:
    • To the original, among them:
      • Jerry eating an apple.
      • "You've got to have faith."
      • "You're so cool, Brewster!"
      • "Welcome to Fright Night. For real."
      • Vampire Amy's Game Face looks like a CGI version of the original Vampire Amy's Game Face.
    • To its sequel:
      • The stake gun being similar to the one used in Fright Night II.
      • Charley and Amy being chased by Ed in Peter's lair is extremely similar to a scene in Fright Night II, in which the characters are chased through the library by a werewolf.
    • Just when you think they've turned Peter Vincent into a Criss Angel clone, he pulls off the facial hair and wig, resembling something much closer to Roddy McDowall's character (albeit with some Mick Jagger rubbed on).
  • Car Fu: And a motorcycle.
  • Cassandra Truth: Zigzagged; some will believe the story about the vampires and others don't.
  • Changed My Mind, Kid:
    Peter: I guess I don't want to be a man like me, either.
  • Chekhov's Armoury: Peter Vincent's collection of relics and weapons come in handy repeatedly over the course of the story.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In order of use:
    1. Charley's mother uses a real estate sign she had from earlier to stake Jerry.
    2. The symbol that Charley photographs, which leads to Vincent's reaction to whom they were dealing with.
    3. The camera focuses on a revolver in one of Peter Vincent's display cases, and Amy tries using it against Jerry later.
    4. When Charley is looking through Ed's notes, he speculates about a stake gun at the bottom of the page, and Peter uses one of his own in the finale.
  • Chekhov's Lecture: Jerry takes a little time to tell Charley how to target the heart and stake it, which comes in useful when vampire!Amy tries to bite him. Staking her off-center gets her off him and lets him save her later on.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Ed has one when he is filming Jerry and believes for a moment that Jerry has seen him.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Despite Charley's fire-retardant clothing, he was burning long enough to feel some extreme pain if not burned. This may be why he faints briefly and is out of it for a few seconds once the battle is over.
  • Covers Always Lie: Despite being on the poster, no axes are used at all during the film
    • Well... there is one, but it's not a fire axe.
    • Also no vampires in the film have red eyes, as the poster believes it to you.
  • Cowardly Lion: Peter Vincent spends a majority of the time going straight into panic mode, but when the chips are down, he finally proves he has a little bit of grit.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Peter Vincent has a panic room, guns with silver bullets and chalices kept full of holy water even while in a display case.
  • Cross-Melting Aura: It's unclear whether Jerry was able to overcome Charley's cross or was unaffected entirely, but either way it burst into flames when he grabbed it.
  • Dare to Be Badass:
    • Invoked by Jerry to Charley, when he was speaking to him about his mom and girlfriend. This leads Charley to become a Buffy-type vampire slayer.
    • Also, Charley to Peter. It takes a little while for it to work, but it does!
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Turns out Peter Vincent knows full well that vampires are real, he only chooses to ignore it. The reason being that when he was a child he witnessed a vampire killing his parents. Said vampire turns out to be Jerry himself.
  • Deadly Delivery: One of the vampires impersonates a delivery guy so he will be invited inside and bypass the entry prohibition.
  • Death by Cameo: Chris Sarandon, who played Jerry in the original, is one of Jerry's victims.
  • Determinator: Ed keeps kicking ass even after getting one of his arms taken off.
  • Disappeared Dad: Charley's and in Peter's case, his dad and his mother as well but there is a good reason for that.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jerry's attacks come off as being reminiscent of sexual assault.
    • Except for his performing a voluntary vampirization on Ed, which looks like a baptization.
  • Don't Do Anything I Wouldn't Do: Given verbatim by Peter Vincent when he leaves Charley and Amy alone so they can have sex.
  • Double Entendre: At the very end, when Charley is about to have sex with Amy, his mom calls. Charley tells her that he can't talk right now because "something just came up."
  • Dying as Yourself: Implied with Ed and Jerry.
  • Evil Gloating: Jerry has Charley right where he can kill him. What does he do? Point out the proper spot to stake a vampire — which Charley didn't know previously. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain.
  • Evil Overlooker: On the poster, Jerry is ominously placed looking over Charley.
  • Exactly What I Aimed At: Charley misses Amy's heart with a stake.
  • Epic Flail: Amy uses one.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Peter and Charley bond over vampire slaying.
  • Game Face: The vampires break these out when they're about to feed.
  • Genre Savvy: Charley, once realizing that he should've taken Ed seriously about Jerry being a vampire, kicks in with crosses and every other anti-vampire tactic he can think of.
  • Give Geeks a Chance:
    Amy: I knew you were a dweeb.
  • Guyliner: Part of Peter Vincent's stage look.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: Peter Vincent hates it, but it's part of his costume.
  • He Will Come For Me: Invoked by Amy. The response is not what she was hoping for.
    Amy: Charley's going to come. He's gonna find me.
    Jerry: I'm counting on it.
  • Holy Burns Evil: Both played straight with holy water and inverted with a cross.
  • Holy Hand Grenade: The stake blessed by Saint Michael that supposedly restores the target's victims. It works.
  • Hope Spot:
    • Charley and Amy are almost out of the club that is a part of Peter's penthouse complex. Then Jerry shows up and Charley is caught by a bouncer and watches his girlfriend get turned.
    • When Charley realizes Jerry's kidnapped and imprisoned a woman, he attempts a daring rescue. In the tensest ten minutes of the film, Charley sneaks in, frees her and narrowly escapes Jerry's attention repeatedly before breaking for freedom into sunlight and freedom. Except Jerry turned the woman already, and was just toying with the both of them the entire time. She bursts into flames in the sun.
  • I Was Just Joking: Peter's reaction to finding out that Charley had taken his suggestion about setting himself on fire seriously. He suggested setting *Jerry* on fire, and he *was* completely serious. He was surprised that Peter took his suggestion after pointing out the obvious flaw in the plan (how do you get close enough to stake a vampire while he's on fire?).
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Peter Vincent in Jerry's basement.
    Peter: Oh shit. I may not be drunk enough for this.
  • Instant Expert: Zigzagged. Charley looks up a guide on how to pick locks when trying to break into Jerry's house, but he gives up and looks for a key instead. However, only a little while later, he manages to pick the lock on Doris' cell without consulting the guide again but it takes him a couple tries and several minutes.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Charley tried to cut off and avoid Ed when he got a hot girlfriend and popular friends, and blew off Ed's concern that Jerry was a vampire — only to discover Ed was right. Guilt and desire to protect his mother and Amy drive him to seek out Peter Vincent for help.
    • Peter as well. He starts as a foul-mouthed, alcoholic prima donna who refuses to help Charley even after Jerry killed everyone in the night club he lives above. He shows up at the end to help Charley defeat Jerry.
  • Key Under the Doormat: Fake rock version.
  • Kick the Dog: Jerry allows Charley to think his rescue of Doris has been successful, only to have her explode into flames and die as soon as they get out into sunlight, for no other reason than to screw with him.
    • When Jerry reveals that he is the vampire that fed on and murdered Peter Vincent's parents. He expresses that Peter has his mother's eyes. And one unsuccessful attempt at shooting him later, his father's aim.
  • Kill It with Fire: ...and a stake. This is Peter's suggestion on the best way to kill the vampire Jerry.
  • Large Ham: Jerry! Which leads to Evil Is Hammy because vampire lords love their drama.
    • Again, David Tennant as Peter Vincent, both on stage and in person when talking with Charlie.
  • Lock and Load Montage: Done by Charley before the Final Battle.
  • Logo Joke: Down through the Dreamworks clouds to the town below.
  • Man on Fire: For the final battle, Charley suits up in a fireproof suit drenched in gas and sets himself ablaze in order to burn Jerry.
  • More Than Mind Control: Jerry uses this from time to time when he's not using brute force to turn others. He uses a nice mix of old fashioned manipulation and temptation to pull people under his sway to turn them into vampires.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The vampires have this going on in their game face.
  • Mr. Fanservice: David Tennant; Shirtless; In leather trousers. You're welcome.
    • Reality Ensues: Peter Vincent points out that leather trousers really don't "breathe", and spends a good amount of time pulling on them to get comfortable. Although shirtless David Tennant in leather trousers grabbing his crotch is also pretty effective Fanservice.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Inverted and Lampshaded by Charley.
    Charley: Jerry? What kind of name is that for a vampire?
  • Nightmare Face: The vampires but especially Amy.
  • No Time to Explain: Charley tells his mother he doesn't have time to explain a million things to her.
  • Not Distracted by the Sexy: Charley is so wigged out by Jerry bringing Doris into his apartment that he blows off Amy's advances, much to her irritation.
  • Not So Different: Charley berates Peter for his refusal to help, but Peter explains that when his parents were killed, the only reason he survived was because he was smart enough to hide...which is exactly what Charley did while Jerry fed on Doris; his first close encounter with a vampire.
  • Oh Crap:
    • Peter's face when he realizes Jerry has set him in a room full of new and hungry vampires and lured them out.
    • Charley reacts this way when he finally manages to get Doris out of Jerry's house, only to have her suddenly turn into ash upon being exposed to sunlight.
  • One-Man Army: Peter is forced into this position in the final battle. Unfortunately for him, Reality Ensues, and after a brief display of badassery, he ends up on the floor being swarmed by vampires.
  • The Oner: Much of the highway chase is filmed as a long take with the camera within the car, moving in between car seats and actors, ala Children of Men.
  • Our Vampires Are Different:
    • They can't enter a house without an invitation though they can find sneaky loopholes like pretending to be delivery boys, cornering people in abandoned buildings, or blowing the place up. They turn humans with a bite, are burned by holy water and can be turned instantly to dust by a stake to the heart or sunlight.
    • Vincent's dialogue, referring to Jerry's lot as a particular "breed," suggests there might be other kinds of vampires out there.
    • When Jerry is finally defeated, black mists leave the turned victims' bodies due to the power of the Stake of Saint Michael, indicating that they were being possessed instead of truly turned.
  • Parental Obliviousness: Ed's parents tell Charley he leaves early and have no idea he's missing.
  • Product Placement:
    • Note how clearly the brand name "Vizio" stands out on the TV in the beginning.
    • Budweiser
    • Chilis
    • Century 21 real estate
    • Midori-brand liquor
    • When Peter's stake-gun fails: "Ooh, feckin' eBay!"
  • Quick Nip: Peter Vincent carries a hip flask for this purpose.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Characters repeatedly hurt their legs by falling from sizable heights.
    • See Soft Glass below.
  • The Remake: Of Fright Night.
  • Remake Cameo: Chris Sarandon, the original Jerry Dandridge, ends up being a snack for the new Jerry Dandridge.
  • Sequel Hook: Vincent notes that Jerry's part of a specific vampire breed. Jerry himself heavily implies werewolves are real.
  • Setting Update: The remake is set in Las Vegas, with Peter Vincent turned into a Criss Angel-esque figure. As Charley and Ed both point out, it makes a very good place for vampires (lots of people work night shift, people move in and out of there all the time).
  • Shout-Out: Peter tells Charley he won't be joining his Scooby gang.
    • The cardboard cut out that Ed beats up is Jim Raynor.
    • Ed's desktop background is a picture of Fiddlesticks
    • Charley's mom comments the house (which has numerous crosses and garlic hung from windows) looks like something out of Dark Shadows.
  • Silver Bullet: Amy shoots Jerry with some. They don't work.
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: In the remake trailer, Peter Vincent is seen for barely a second, with most of the trailer focusing on Charley and Jerry.
  • The Social Darwinist: Jerry comes off like this, when he makes remarks that he's apart of "hundreds of years of evolution".
  • Soft Glass:
    • Averted unlike so many other films. Every time a character breaks glass, be it a window or a display case, they hit it with something else rather than punching through it.
    • Jerry plays this straight because he's a vampire.
  • Special Person, Normal Name: Jerry the Vampire.
  • Suburbia: Most of the movie is set in a new middle-class residential development — a little island of identical houses surrounded by desert.
  • Take That: Some of the marketing, and the movie itself, takes a few digs at the Twilight series.
  • Title Drop: As in the original, Fright Night is the name of Peter Vincent's show. Jerry also gets a chance to say it as well.
  • Trailers Always Spoil:
    • The scene where Jerry blows up the Brewsters' house is one of the main set pieces featured in the trailers.
    • Poster ads in Asia would often spoiler the vampire Game Faces, added to the bottom corner, as if they were afraid people would think it's that kind of vampire movie.
  • Underside Ride: Jerry, after the heroes try to run him over.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy:
    • Charley has a broad knowledge of every known substance that's supposed to repel and kill vampires in fiction, Jerry laughingly shrugs off every attempt. He learns the hard way that, among other things, you need to hit the heart for a stake to work, and you have to have faith for holy symbols to be a real deterrent. Otherwise, he can quickly grab it and toss it away. We also never see Jerry's reaction to garlic.
    • Also happens with Amy when she tries shooting silver bullets at Jerry. As he happily informs her, that only hurts werewolves. She follows it up with holy water, which DOES hurt vampires.
  • Vampire Bites Suck: Some of the victims get their throats torn out bloodily. Others get the classic bite and suck.
  • Vampire Invitation:
    Jerry: "Don't need an invitation if there's no house."
    • Ed finds out the hard way that this trope doesn't work if a home has been abandoned.
    • They use technicalities to their advantage, like casually inviting a deliveryman in for an unusually late night package.
  • Viva Las Vegas: Couldn't move the setting here without once scene like this at the very end.
  • You Killed My Parents: Peter Vincent's backstory with Jerry.
  • Your Vampires Suck:


Fright NightVampire FictionFrom Dusk Till Dawn
Letters from Iwo JimaCreator/Dream WorksGalaxy Quest
Flowers of WarFilms of the 2010sFootloose
Fright NightHorror FilmsThe Frighteners

alternative title(s): Fright Night 2011
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