- Apr 16, 2008
- Hawthorne, NV
- Real Name
- Todd Erwin
When Twilight Time released Fright Night on Blu-ray three years ago, they were quite surprised that all 3,000 copies sold out very quickly. As an attempt to appease fans who couldn’t get their hands on that disc, the studio has released an Encore 30th Anniversary Edition, including fan-made extras that have been circulating on the internet for years, this time with a limited run of 5,000 copies, which, unfortunately, sold out before street date.
Distributed By: Twilight Time
Video Resolution and Encode: 1080P/AVC
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio: English 2.0 DTS-HDMA, English 5.1 DTS-HDMA
Subtitles: English SDH
Run Time: 1 Hr. 46 Min.
Package Includes: Blu-rayClear Blu-ray keepcase
Disc Type: BD50 (dual layer)
Release Date: 01/20/2014
Welcome to Fright Night..... for real.
The Production Rating: 4/5
One evening, while making out with his girlfriend Amy (Amanda Bearse) and watching the late night creature feature series Fright Night on television, teenager Charley Brewster (William Ragsdale) spots what he thinks is a coffin being loaded into the vacant house next door. The next day, he sees a prostitute exiting a taxi cab and entering the house next door. When the woman is found dead by police, Charley becomes suspicious, until that evening he sees his new neighbor, Jerry Dandridge (Chris Sarandon), begin to transform into a vampire. This prompts Charley to contact the police, who laugh him off after questioning Dandridge’s roommate, Billy Cole (Jonathan Stark). Fearing for his life, Charley asks his friend, “Evil” Ed (Stephen Geoffreys), what he can do to protect himself from being attacked by a vampire. As a last ditch effort, he approaches the host of Fright Night, Peter Vincent (Roddy McDowell), seeking his protection. Peter Vincent is a former actor, best known for his Van Helsing-type roles in Hammer Studios-style vampire movies, many of which play regularly on Fright Night.
Tom Holland’s directorial debut is a genuinely fun horror film, filled with campy humor and wonderful performances, notably Chris Sarandon and Roddy McDowell. Sarandon is devilishly charming as the vampire next door, often delivering his lines with his tongue firmly planted in his cheek. McDowell is also charming as the down and out actor that has been so typecast as a vampire killer that he must now assume that persona as his new career or risk being killed. William Ragsdale and Amanda Bearse show their comedic talents (both would later star in sitcoms on the FOX network) in these early roles, but the weak link in the cast is Stephen Geoffreys as “Evil” Ed, whose line delivery can be rather annoying, at least until his transformation into a slave vampire. The make-up and visual effects hold up fairly well for a film made 26 years ago, much to the credit of Richard Edlund (Ghostbusters).
This appears to be the same transfer used on the previous 2011 Twilight Time release, with a few adjustments. As part of a licensing deal with Sony Pictures, Twilight Time brings Fright Night to Blu-ray in a spectacular 1080p transfer using the AVC codec, preserving the film’s original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and minted from a recent 4k resolution master. While not exactly eye candy, the transfer is an extremely faithful representation of how the film appeared in theaters in 1985. Detail is exceptional, revealing textures in fabrics as well as the talcum powder in Roddy McDowell’s hair. Blacks are deep, while colors are consistent and realistic, never bleeding. Contrast has been slightly increased throughout, resulting in a marginally brighter image than on the previous release.
Video Rating: 4/5 3D Rating: NA
Like the video, the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is a faithful representation of the film’s original matrixed stereo surround soundtrack, but with increased fidelity and dynamic range. What was originally a front-heavy mix remains so, with limited use of surrounds and LFE. Dialogue is intelligible and clear, and Brad Fiedel’s synth score has never sounded better. This edition also includes the original stereo mix in DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0.
Audio Rating: 4/5
For this 30th Anniversary Edition, Twilight Time reached out to horror-fan websites Icons of Fright and Shock Till You Drop to include commentaries and interviews that have been available online.
Special Features Rating: 4/5
Audio Commentary with Writer-Director Tom Holland and Actors Chris Sarandon and Jonathan Stark: Icons of Fright’s Tim Sullivan moderates this “vampires” commentary, with Holland, Sarandon, and Stark lovingly discussing the production.
Audio Commentary with Writer-Director Tom Holland, Actors William Ragsdale and Stephen Geoffreys, and FX Artist Randall Cook: Icons of Fright’s Tim Sullivan and Jeremy Smith moderate this “heroes” commentary, which is just as lively as the previous track, with all involved discussing the production with a lot of passion.
Fright Night Reunion Panel (480i; 54:32): Icons of Fright’s Rob Galluzzo moderates this reunion panel from 2008’s Fear Fest 2, featuring Tom Holland, Chris Sarandon, William Ragsdale, Stephen Geoffreys, Amanda Bearse, Jonathan Stark, Tommy Lee Wallace, and Julie Carmen. The video appears to be someone’s home movie, shot with a single camera from the audience, using the camera’s built-in microphone.
Shock Till You Drop Presents Choice Cuts with Tom Holland and Ryan Turek (480i; 10:42, 6:52, 10:44): Shock Till You Drop’s Ryan Turek interviews Tom Holland at his home (broken down into three segments), discussing his earlier career as an actor, then as a writer (and his breakthrough script for Psycho II), directing Fright Night, and ends with a brief tour of Holland’s Fright Night memorabilia.
Vintage EPK (480i; 94:52): The entire electronic press kit, a few generations removed from the original source tape (along with tracking issues and visible time code), includes the J. Geils Band music video Fright Night (in both English and Spanish), on-set interviews with the cast and crew, and TV-safe clips from the movie.
Stills Gallery (1080p): Promotional stills from Tom Holland’s personal collection.
Isolated Music Score: Brad Fiedel's score, in DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 stereo.
Green-band Theatrical Trailer (1080p; 1:23)
Red-band Theatrical Trailer (1080p; 1:26)
Booklet Insert with Essay by Julie Kirgo: This is the same essay from the 2011 release, with slightly different artwork and layout.
Unfortunately, all 5,000 copies have already been depleted. For those who purchased but not viewed this disc, be assured you have a true collector’s edition in your hands.
Overall Rating: 4/5
Reviewed By: Todd Erwin
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