FRIGHT NIGHT (1985)
Directed in 1985 by Tom Holland, the original FRIGHT NIGHT is almost totally different from the remake. The characters are a lot better in this, with Chris Sarandon as a much better brooding and subtle vampire than Colin Farrel’s plain guy who happens to be a vampire. Evil Ed is also incredible, a brilliant turn by Stephen Geoffreys and fantastic special effects that more than hold up today make him one of my favourite things in anything EVER.
Original vs. Remake: The original is more sexual, has better music and atmosphere, and is overall vastly superior in nearly every way, except for David Tennant’s Peter Vincent and the insanity of the final fight. While the remake is entertaining enough, the original might be my favourite vampire movie ever.
DAWN OF THE DEAD (1978)
Directed in 1978 by horror legend George A. Romero, this spawned it all, from Dead Rising to The Walking Dead. The thing I noticed while watching this was that while it’s undoubtedly a classic and fantastic film, it’s not so much a zombie horror as much as a plain survival movie. You could replace the zombies with most anything and it would be the same movie, even a bit more tense because the zombies weren’t that dangerous.
Original vs. Remake: Overall, I think for the intents of a Halloween movie the remake is better. The original is very philosophical about killing zombies and more meta in people losing their minds – what The Walking Dead TV show should be – but in the remake it’s all the most tense and horror-like parts shoved together with an hour of exposition shaved off. Because of the better characters, more stressful scenes and the danger of the zombies, the remake takes it.