Mike Madriaga 12:40 p.m., May 25
Short Takes: Fright Night
Was this remake really necessary? A one-mile square housing development situated in the middle of the Las Vegas desert is now the setting for a digitized-facelift of Tom Holland’s ho-hum 1985 cult horror item. No one believes Anton Yelchin’s claim that neighbor Colin Farrell is a vampire and responsible for the death of two of his classmates, so he turns to a celebrity casino magician (David Tennant) for help. It’s great to look at -- you can practically set your watch according to cinematographer Javier Aguirresarobe’s subtle shift of late afternoon, early evening light -- but the performances, particularly Farrell’s beefy neck-nibbler and Christopher Mintz-Plasse’s vengeful nerd, deserve better. Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl) directs. With: Toni Collette, Imogen Poots, and an amusing bit by original cast member Chris Sarandon.
Reader Rating: One Star