Release Date: Available on Blu-Ray & DVD October 1
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 5/10
By day Gerri Dandridge is a sexy professor, but by night she transforms into a real-life vampire with an unquenchable thirst for human blood. So when a group of high school students travel abroad to study in Romania, they find themselves ensnared in Gerri’s chilling web of lust and terror. Charley and “Evil” Ed must stop Gerri from drinking and bathing in the blood of a “new moon virgin,” which just so happens to be Charley’s ex-girlfriend, Amy. They enlist help from Peter Vincent, the vampire hunting host of a reality show called “Fright Night,” to drive a stake through Gerri’s plan and save Amy from a fate far worse than death.
I will admit that I didn’t go into ‘Fright Night 2 New Blood’ expecting much, but from the 2 in the title I was at the very least expecting a sequel, even if every single character had been recast by no name individuals. I was still somewhat interested in checking this one out and was more than happy to give it a viewing when given access to a screening copy to view. Please note that this review is based on the Unrated Version of the film but not on the retail release.
‘Fright Night 2 New Blood’ is the straight to video follow up to the surprisingly great 2011 reboot starring Colin Farrel and Anton Yelchin. Unfortunately, instead of an actual sequel to that film, what we get here is yet another reboot of the series with some minor changes to the plot.
The key changes here are that as opposed to a vampire living next door, Charley and his friend ‘Evil’ Ed become convinced that their teacher is the vampire. This time around the key villain is a female and the story takes place in Romania where these kids are for some reason studying abroad. Ed is still his normal self and he and Charley are best buds. Once they start to suspect what is going on they decide they should look up the TV show host Peter Vincent for some assistance in dealing with the problem. The fact that Ed is still his normal self and best friends with Charley, in addition to the fact that these two have had no previous contact with Peter Vincent is about all of the facts you need to determine that this is in no way a sequel. It seems they would have been better off simply omitting the 2 from the title and calling the film ‘Fright Night New Blood’ as the 2 really misleads everyone into believing this is indeed a sequel when it is not in any way. Perhaps that is just what they intended to pull in viewers. After all, there probably is a reason that I’m not the one naming these movies.
Unfortunately, ‘Fright Night 2 New Blood’ is a pretty huge disappointment when compared to its predecessor which was unexpectedly wonderful. The plot is simply a tired rehash of the first, and the acting is pretty laughable at times. The performances are certainly far better than a lot that I have seen in some TV or straight to video releases, but they are not anything to write home about either. They are overbearing at times and you can’t help but giggle. On a positive note, there were some mildly interesting elements of the film such as a concept with vampires using some kind of internal sonar device in order to track people. While it may be a bit of a farfetched idea, it was refreshing to see something new and original implemented here. There were also at least one or two pretty gnarly gore sequences that I’ll admit impressed me and kept things at least somewhat fun. The most impressive performance would likely have to be that of Peter Vincent, who this time around is portrayed by Sean Power (who I am unfamiliar with otherwise) who pulled off the role fairly competently.
While ‘Fright Night 2 New Blood’ is probably something you don’t need to rush out and get your hands on immediately, it might be a fun one to watch with a group of friends and have a good time and a few laughs. It is a far step down from the fantastic 2011 ‘Fright Night’ but it’s certainly superior to a number of straight to video sequels we’ve seen over the course of the past few decades.
Film Rating: 5/10
‘Fright Night 2 New Blood’ will be released on Blu-Ray & DVD Tuesday, October 1 from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.