Monday, 3 October 2011


"Ready for some camp fun with Night of the Demons? But which is better, the original or the remake? Refreshingly, the premise for the latter refuses to stray too far from the former, in which a group of teens attend a Halloween party in a spooky funeral parlor, where a monstrous spirit takes possession of the host and suddenly the party becomes a living hell as the terrified teens, pursued by the murderous, demonic villain, desperately try to get out of the house alive. The only real difference is that their party is so much bigger, but cleverly loses the majority of its drunken teens when the police raid the property, leaving just a select few, all pretty, as with the original telling.

Both films are entertaining enough, and both leads carry each film, although Cathy Podewell's Judy edges out Monica Keena's Maddie for likeability, just, but the spooky mansion takes centre stage on both occasions and makes the perfect backdrop, while its Halloween theme allows the kids to go in fancy dress (most of them anyway), allowing for a titillating spectacle. The make-up on the demons are decent enough in both, and the casts are clearly having fun (even a rather chunky Edward Furlong).                                     

In the 2010 version there are some decent nods to the original, even if the lady answering the door, dressed in pink, revealing her charms by bending over in front of two young female trick or treaters is mildly baffling, but you'll be pleased to know that the 'lipstick' scene has been kept, and although Diora Baird's Lily is easier on the eye in the remake, for some reason (maybe because I'd watched the original hours earlier and had only just picked my jaw up off the floor) the scene looks and works better first time round - it's still a cracking moment though.

With Shannon Elizabeth popping up as the host, the latter is heavier on blood, nudity and action, but also includes a ridiculous trick of the light that almost ruins what came before it. Why they've changed the original characters is slightly confusing, but both films take themselves seriously enough to stop them descending into farce (considering the premise that's not bad going), while director Adam Gierasch handles his set-pieces superbly.

His version is genuinely funny too, but there's something very innocent about Kevin Tenney's original, and although the murders aren't as thrilling, it's more of a satisfying watch overall. Neither film is a horror classic, but both are worthy of your attention, and they are far more enjoyable fare than the majority of teen slashers around at the moment. You can pick faults with both, but at the end of the day there is enough reason to stick around, even if it's simply to watch pretty kids die in all manner of brutal ways."                    DW

No comments:

Post a Comment