Monday, May 9, 2011

Fangs for Nothing: FRIGHT NIGHT PART II (1988)

True story that will make you cry - I never got to see FRIGHT NIGHT PART II in the theater.  Living overseas at the time, the Armed Forces entertainment system depended mostly on big releases.  If it got into 1,000 theaters in the U.S., chances are it would hit the military base theaters within a few months time.  Oh, and for some reason we got every Cannon Films movie.  Yay Charles Bronson!  So with this vampire sequel slipping into only 150 theaters in May of 1989, chances were slim that I would get to see it unfold on the big screen.  I eventually got to see it on VHS and enjoyed the hell out of it.  It is a great sequel that hits the similar riffs of the first film, yet slightly alters them.  But, even back then as semi-formed Video Junkie, I knew the transition to home video had cropped off a lot of the action.

In 2003, Artisan pulled a big screw you on the fans by finally releasing the popular film on DVD...in the FULLSCREEN format.  Yay.  It looked like a widescreen release would never see the light of day as the execs would probably say lack of interest in their shoddy fullscreen release means no one wants to see it widescreen so they can't re-release it.  Thankfully, some Video God intervened and the film was shown in its proper aspect ratio on the short-lived channel Monsters HD.  Why is this so important?  Well, director Tommy Lee Wallace was an longtime friend of John Carpenter.  And, like his buddy, he loves to use the widescreen framing to full effect.  Homeboys know how to compose the hell out of a 2.35:1 widescreen aspect ratio.  And here are just a few comparison shots (fullscreen vs. widescreen) to show you what the hell I am so giddy about when, after 23 years of waiting, I finally got to check out the full FRIGHT NIGHT PART II.

Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Fullscreen: 


Widescreen:  


Pretty wild, ain't it?  Some weren't as unfortunate as me and did get to see this on the big screen *cough, Tom, cough* but at least I can get some semblance of what it was like.  I'm telling you, once I get that time machine working, I am totally going back to check this thing out in the theater.  Save the world from Hitler?  Stop Ted Bundy?  Kill the ancestors of the Kardashians?  All of those can wait.  I gots to see me some FRIGHT NIGHT PART II on the big screen.  

Moments of Clarity:

0 Reactions:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...