Updated: Jul 7
Film: Fear Street Part 1: 1994
Starring: Olivia Scott Welch, Kiana Madeira, Benjamin Flores Jr., Julia Rehwald, Maya Hawke, David W. Thompson, Fred Hechinger, Ashley Zuckerman
Directed by: Leigh Janiak
Review: Klep Napier
Rating: 3X’s out of 5X’s
If Nickelodeon’s “Are You Afraid Of The Dark” received an R rating from the Movie Association it would look like R.L. Stine’s Fear Street!
Netflix’s Fear Street is based on a long running series of books written by Goosebumps creator Robert Lawrence Stine. The film has been chopped into a trilogy of gory tales which all take place in the same fictional town known as Shadyside. In American Horror Story fashion, each story takes place in a different time [1994, 1978 and 1666] with performances from the same actors as different characters, tying together the mythos of urban legends about a murderers, witches and curses. Each film will also be released week to week throughout the month of July.
But first, let’s talk about part one. Fear Street 1994 follows a group of teens who begin a night for survival following a series of mysterious murders in Shadyside.
On purpose this film falls right into the category of the “Scream” franchise mimicking the sort of slash and suspense horror lovers of the 1990’s will understand.
Most set ups and characters are cliche from the very start, beginning with a classic cold opening to set the tone of terror right before the opening credits. Strong female leads [Madeira], Asshole boyfriends, and innocent male virgins who know how to play by all the rules in order to help the others survive [Flores Jr] just to name a few tropes. But this isn’t for us horror veterans. No. Fear Street does exactly what the books did for younger generations years ago. It plays merely as an introduction into the genre for newbies. But do not be fooled. The violence in this film isn’t for the faint and or something you want to have to explain to a 10 year old so keep the audience at least TV14 plus.
Overall Fear Street Part one feels like it never slows down and will not cheat out you out of what the marketing leads you to expect. At times you’ll think it’s going in the realm of dark comedy ie The Babysitter meets Goosebumps meets Scooby Doo: Monsters Unleashed but then a unexpected Axe to the head will set you back on course. We honestly think the summer time may forget this one but October is right around the corner to embrace it properly. This would’ve been an awesome addition to the Halloween season, but wherever or whenever, Fear Street Part one will have you inching to know more about what’s to come in the upcoming sequels.
Catch Fear Street Part 1: 1994 July 2nd Only on Netflix