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Fright Night (1985)

Nerdish small-town teenager Charlie (William Ragsdale) discovers that his new neighbour, Jerry Dandridge (Chris Sarandon) is a vampire and responsible for several deaths in the area.

Desperate because friends and family do not believe his tale, and in danger from the vampire who knows that his secret has been discovered, he turns to Peter Vincent (Roddy McDowall), the washed-up TV host of a horror show (called Fright Night) who claims to be a vampire killer.

Chris Sarandon’s Jerry is a stylish vampire dressed in a full-length leather cape, who presents a convincing image of virility and potent menace, while the screenplay – in a possible nod to Polanski’s The Fearless Vampire Killers (1967) – coyly hints that Jerry is involved in a bisexual relationship with his roommate (Jonathan Stark).

Director/screenwriter Tom Holland – who previously penned Class of 1984 (1982) and Psycho II – respects the historical archetypes of the vampire genre (garlic, wooden stakes, coffins, aversion to daylight, non-reflection in mirrors etc) and mercifully steers clear of overt parody of the Love At First Bite (1979) variety.


Jerry Dandridge
Chris Sarandon
Charlie Brewster
William Ragsdale
Amy Peterson
Amanda Bearse
Peter Vincent
Roddy McDowall
Evil Ed
Stephen Geoffreys
Billy Cole
Jonathan Stark
Judy Brewster
Dorothy Fielding
Detective Lennox
Art Evans
Steward Stern
Robert Corff
Miss Nina
Pamela Brown

Tom Holland