After watching the surprisingly fun (and occasionally well crafted) original "Night Of The Demons", it was only right that the just released remake make my Halloween viewing pile. After watching a rather cliche trailer, my expectations seemed to be set down a few notches for this modern view on this basic story. Luckily, I came out of this remake with rather surprised results as the film ably captured the spirit of the original and updated it nicely making it almost as good as the original.
Maddie (Keena) and her friends are going to the biggest underground Halloween party around at the local legendary haunted house the Broussard Mansion. The party's hostess Angela (Elizabeth) is set to make some serious money with this bash, but when the cops shut down the party and Maddie and 5 friends get stuck inside they must face an evil that has been waiting for decades to free itself. Now as demons begin to stalk and posses each of the members, they have to find a way to survive the night and fend off the ghoulish fiends or go to hell.
So really, one has to understand going into this version of "Night Of The Demons" that even the original one wasn't all that original in its concept. To its benefit, this one homages the first one nicely with many of its scenes (keeping some memorable parts in and adding its own twists like the disappearing lipstick in the boob trick or Angela's dance sequence) and even throws some nice little details to homage other Horror films like some "Evil Dead" moments or a "Saw" reference. In this way, its a nice updated version of the original.
What "Night Of The Demons" fails to do as well as the original is balance the humor and the Horror. Although the Horror of the film (with some pretty cool special effects to add to it) is just as potent and works as well with some very cool sequences, like the demon hands that punch through the walls of the bleeding room, the humor is a bit off. The campy-ness of the film is lost in its modernity more often than not despite some pretty funny moments and it loses a bit of the charm the original one had in its absurdity.
With a fairly able cast some new unique visual looks for the director (including a new and improved (read: any at all) back story), "Night Of The Demons" comes off as a damn impressive remake. Not quite as good as the original, this one does handle itself nicely and make enough changes to freshen itself up a bit while remaining true to its source.
BONUS RANT: The original "Night Of The Demons" may have had a campy intro, but for the 80s, it was bad ass. This one just has a relatively stupid title sequence with an awful title card that makes it really feel like a straight to DVD film while the rest rises above that stereotype. I would have liked to see an updated version of the credits of the original one for this, but alas all we get is a shitty title card.
Written By Matt Reifschneider