Fright Night (1985) is Quintessential Eighties Horror

frightnight.jpg

Talk about a quintessential 1980s film. “Fright Night” truly embodies the Reagen decade with visions of neon permed sexuality and inexplicable club life. In short, I loved it. Roddy McDowall, as always is subtle and hilarious. One can really see why Johnny Depp chose to emulate his mannerisms in “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”. Although Mr. Depp is a good actor, when you want a Roddy McDowall it is best to go straight to the source.

Peter Vincent, The Mighty Vampire Hunter

Peter Vincent, The Mighty Vampire Hunter

One of the most debated characters in this film is the “Billy” character. What is he? He is certainly undead. I mean c’mon he turns into sand when he dies. Yes he cannot be a vampire can he? He is able to move around during the day. Since this is a pre-daywalker era I can only assume he is either a vampire variant or some other type of undead. Maybe a zombie or a ghoul? I tried looking online for creatures that turn into sand when they die, but couldn’t find anything. Anyone have any ideas?

Weird thing, I have never seen Fright Night 2, but it is now in my Netflix Queue and should come by the end of the month.

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Garry Vander Voort

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3 thoughts on “Fright Night (1985) is Quintessential Eighties Horror

  1. Fright Night was my very first DVD. In truth, I only bought it because it was priced cheap (hey I had just blown all my money on the darn DVD player!). Awesome movie.

    That vampire shot above still gives me the creeps though! A truly ugly vampire if I’ve ever seen one.

  2. I love this movie! And Roddy McDowall is the man. I was actually super-stoked that they were going to have David Tennant play his role… Until I saw what the new “Peter Vincent” was to look like. I still think the horror host / retired Hammer films actor works much better than a magician, but whatever.

    Anyway, this post is four years old, but I believe Billy was simply a slave. In that, he had been given eternal life from a bite, but hadn’t been allowed to drink the vampire’s blood. He probably turned to sand because he was a few centuries old.

    “Bordello of Blood” also had a character like this (though he didn’t turn into sand when he died).

    These types of characters were loosely based on Reinfeld from the original “Dracula”. It’s a handy plot device for a vampire to have a slave protect him during the daylight hours.

    Additionally, I really REALLY like that the filmmakers weren’t compelled to explain what Billy was, exactly.

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