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REMAKES (aka, The Lil Story Of How The Guy Who Consistently Bashes Hollywood, Specifically Platinum Dunes & Marcus Nispel, For Raping My Childhood Over & Over Again W/ their Shitty Remakes Finally Came To Not Only Believe In One, But Actually Support It)

August 19, 2011

“Welcome…to…Frrrright…Night.  For real…”

Fiends & Geeks, if you don’t recognize those immortal words uttered by the immortal vampire Jerry Dandridge in the 1985 classic, FRIGHT NIGHT, then…then…I got nothing.  Go to Amazon immediately, buy it, and educate yourself on Tom Holland’s bonafide genius vampire movie.  Or, come see me – I’ve got about three copies each of the damned thing in every format mankind has produced in the last 25 years.

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I feel I must also point out that in countless reviews over the years where I’ve bashed the hell out of Platinum Dunes Studios for their mostly shitty, carbon copy, cookie cutter, ADD-riddled camera movements, and especially their “hey let’s explain all the cool mythology not explained in the original because audiences these days are stupid” mentality as well as the imaginationless director Marcus Nispel (who I hear also just buried my beloved CONAN THE BARBARIAN remake into the ground with his patented blahness), that the new FRIGHT NIGHT is actually put out by Sony Pictures, so I have hope.

For those of you not familiar with my reviews, blogs, columns, and whatnot, I’m the guy (one of a legion, actually) who genuinely hates 98.2% of all remakes since the day that Gus Van Zant somehow thought it was a brilliant idea to remake PSYCHO shot for shot.  But before you say, “Now Gus, don’t be Nic Cage’s wig in SEASON OF THE WITCH”, I must also say that I don’t care if it’s a remake or not IF AND ONLY IF it’s a good movie, no matter how much I may have loved the original version…a good horror movie is a good horror movie, plain and simple, and there have been a few remakes in the last few years I’ve actually enjoyed as much as or more than the original, so the hope still doesn’t falter yet.

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But to be totally honest with you, when I hear news of or see a preview for a new horror remake, I initially cringe.  Some, I’ll give my money to in theaters just out of curiosity.  Most, I’ll wait and see if I get a screener copy to review.  The ones I don’t receive in the mail, I usually bite the silver bullet and rent it once it hits the DVD stores.  But yet here I find myself (and yes, it’s curious to even myself) not cringing once nor thinking I’d rather wait for DVD, for the first time in maybe a decade.  In fact, I’m chomping at the bit like a starving zombie racing for the last live brain in the city to see this damned movie.  And the sooner the better.  Analyzing it now, I think it might have something to do with the people behind it…

The Writer, Marti Noxon – this woman KNOWS vampires.  Working with the genius of Joss Whedon on BUFFY and ANGEL for years, her own genius was finally turned loose on many of the later episodes of said shows and most definitely shone through the darkness on more than one occasion.  I have complete and total faith in her abilities to juggle several important main characters without missing a beat.  Yes, I’m in total fanboy love with this woman, and am not afraid to shout it from the highest turret of the tallest haunted castle in the land.  I honestly don’t think anyone else could have done this story as well as her.

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The cast?  Please…perfect casting from where I sit for every single one of the main characters.  I could list them out and praise them for what they’ve already done and why I think they are a perfect fit for this movie but hey, if you want to see this movie anywhere near as badly as I do, then you already know who’s in it so why should I waste your time there, right?

The Director, Craig Gillespie – no horror movies or TV shows under his belt from what I could find, unless you count MR. WOODCOCK.  Personally, I do.  But, I say, bring on the new guy anyway and let’s see what he can do.  My money is on him not being another Marcus Nispel.  To my knowledge, there’s only one more out there on Nispel’s level, and that would be the head of Platinum Dunes, Michael Bay himself.  Please, don’t get me started on him.  Mr. Gillespie, make me proud!

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Another example of how hope is now springing eternal for this flick for me?  Well, the Green Machine himself, the one and only Mr. Frights, buried his box and summoned up a Crossroads Demon, kicked the ever-loving shit out of said demon, took Its passes away, and went to an advance screening of the new FRIGHT NIGHT, and loved it to no end.  In fact, he posted a spoiler-free (my favorite kind) review as soon as he got back to his crypt, that you can find right here –   Me?  I didn’t get so lucky – the demon was out of advance passes by the time I got to It, and instead tried to swallow my soul.  Stupid demon, everyone knows I have no soul.  So It instead swallowed the business end of my Boomstick. 

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I know I’ve talked a shit-ton of hype in this edition for a guy who has yet to see the movie I’m blatantly gushing over throughout this whole thing.  Maybe I’m looking so much forward to this reimagining of one of my favorite vampire movies of all time that I’m setting myself up for failure?  But something deep down inside my cold, black heart tells me that my frothing anticipation will definitely pay off when I walk out of the theater this weekend and that instead of cursing and throwing nachos at the screen I will instead be elated and clamoring for more.  We’ll find out in just a few short hours.  And that, my fiends, definitely gives me hope.  Without hope, we have nothing to look forward to.  And you bet your asses I’m looking forward to this!!

 

– Craig McGee

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