Macabre…ish Horror Review: Fright Night 2



Fright Night 2, 1988/ 1 hr 43 min



It begins with Charlie Brewster (William Ragsdale) ending his three year relationship with his therapist, Dr. Scott Harrison (Ernie Sabella), by rejecting what he knows to be true for a more palatable lie. Jerry Dandridge was not a vampire but a serial killer and he and Peter Vincent (Roddy McDowall) have the same memories because of group hypnosis.


Charlie has been avoiding Peter’s calls but is thinking about reconnecting with him. So Charlie goes home and tosses all of his vampire tools, weapons and protections.


Meanwhile, Peter Vincent is still hosting Fright Night and convincing people that monsters are real between horror movies. Charlie shows up on set with his girlfriend, Alex (Traci Lind), to reunite with Peter. They spend the evening listening to Peter rehash past events that Charlie has worked hard to reject ever happened at all.


While there, Charlie notices movers moving in casket sized boxes, into the building. And a limo parked out front. That, Charlie, also rejects, he and Alex leave. In the foyer, the occupants of the limo enter, they are a mysterious looking group. Charlie can’t not stare. He tries to forget about it and continue with his date but a vampire gets in his head and ruins it.


After unsuccessfully getting Alex as she walks home, Belle (Russell Clark), settles for one of her neighbors, he skates her down and feeds on her while she’s tying her shoe.


Also out hunting is a werewolf, Louis (Jonathan Gries), he is much less successful and falls when a window in slammed onto his claws. He falls several stories and lands in a bush. Bozworth (Brian Thompson), waiting down below, mocks him.


Back at Charlie’s house, the mysterious woman, Regine (Julie Carmine), knocks on his door, he recognizes her and quickly reminds himself that there are no such things as vampires. He hurriedly tidies up and invites her in. A quick flirtation turns into making out, then as she’s about to feed, he screams and wakes up…to someone knocking on the door. It’s Alex. They make up and she stays until Charlie falls asleep.


Outside in the limo, Belle and Louie are sharing dinner and Bozworth is outside the car, eating bugs.


Charlie returns to therapy because he’s concerned and now he’s light sensitive and sleeping during the day. Plus a cut on his neck will not stop bleeding. His therapist recommends bowling. And so, Charlie goes bowling.


On campus, once again Charlie sees the limo and the mysterious people, with them is his friend Richie, so he decides to follow them when they drive away. Charlie completely forgets his date with Alex, who ends up going to the show with Louie the werewolf.


Outside the residential building, Charlie can see through the window, Richie is being fed on by Julie and Belle. And he immediately knocks on Peter’s door who is not as helpful as he expected, in fact, he’s acting just like Charlie’s shrink. Peter says his resistance is because those people are his neighbors. But Charlie, insists he’s going, so they go to the neighbors’, who also happen to be having a party.


They find Richie on the couch, who is kind of out of it. Charlie checks for neck bites and finds none. Just as they’re about to leave, Belle and Regine enter the party and Charlie can’t resist dancing with Regine. She changes and fully mesmerizing Charlie. The spell is broken when everyone claps. Regine is a performance artist and everyone at this party seems to know that but Charlie and Peter. So that convinces Charlie that he was wrong and he leaves.


But Peter witnesses guests being fed on. So he does a mirror test and some people fail. When he flees, Regine appears in front of him. Every direction he runs, she appears in front of him.

She wants to talk about Jerry Dandridge, her brother. Who was a thousand years old when they killed him. She promises Peter death, but a quick one, unlike the death she has planned for Charlie. Then she transforms and flies away.


Meanwhile, Charlie finally remembers he had a date and misses the entire thing but don’t worry, Louie walks Alex home after the show is over. That night, while Charlie is sleeping, Regine comes to him and feeds.


Peter nervously waits until morning to talk to Charlie again and tell him about last night. But in the mean time he runs back to set to warn everyone just to discover he’s been fired.


The next day, Charlie begs Alex for yet another chance and promises to bring her dinner in the library tonight. Peter arrives just in time to warn Charlie but once again, one believes, while the other does not.


By lunch time, Charlie he is discovering he has a blood lust and a new aversion to garlic. That freaks him out and when he runs to his therapist’s office, the news announces that Richie’s remains have been found.


Just like clockwork, Charlie believes in vampires again. He happens upon the vampires lair and finds Belle asleep in his coffin. And Bozworth, lurking around, identifying and eating spiders. When Charlie finds Regine in her coffin, she mesmerizes him as he’s about to plunge a broken chair leg into her chest. He seems to sleep walk out of the building and into the middle of the street. He doesn’t remember the last half hour.


That night at the library, Alex is studying and Louie finds her there, he promises to come back if she’s stood up again. While the monsters wait, they go to the bowling alley, they bowl and kill and eat some employees.


Meanwhile, Charlie does make his library date with Alex and they find out that Regine has taken Peter’s spot as host of Fright Night. She uses the job to mesmerize the viewers. And it has quite an impact of Charlie.


Louis returns to the library and harasses Alex and Charlie, it quickly turns into a werewolf playing with his potential food. When Alex stuffs her dozen roses down Louis’ throat, it lights his mouth on fire and scares him away. Finally, Charlie does not believe it’s group hypnosis. That definitely just happened.


And when Peter sees Regine doing her dance on his show, he arrives on set to kill her and ends up locked up in a mental facility. Alex reaches out to Charlie’s therapist and discovers, he’s also a vampire when he tries to attack her. She stabs him with train track wood and he calmly makes it worse and kills himself.


After that, Alex masquerades as Peter’s therapist to spring him from the hospital. A dedicated Peter Vincent fan and believer, who’s also a patient, helps break him out.


With Alex, Peter prepares for war. Charlie is currently in the clutches of Regine, being prepped for an eternity of torture.


The rescue is messy but it’s not long until Regine is the only one of her group still alive. She claws her way through the building to get to her coffin in the basement. But Alex, Charlie and Peter stay in the fight and her end comes from sun reflected off of a shard of mirror.


This sequel was directed by Tommy Lee Wallace and did not get the fan fair and is not as beloved as the first but it’s still very entertaining and follows the same framework. This one has more humor in it and the writing is solid and makes sense, it does a job continuing the story from the original. Regine is very like Jerry in a lot of ways, the way she’s written does a good job convincing us she’s his sister. They use the same techniques and their insistence on tormenting their victims was each of their downfall. The only thing that annoyed me is Charlie constantly changing his mind about vampires and what his own eyes