A slick summer camp slasher
I must confess, I wasn’t a massive fan of Fear Street 1994. The movie felt tonally jarring, the 90’s references were crowbarred in and the plot felt like it should have been tailored for a younger audience but with an unnecessary 18 rating attached to it. Going into Part 2 I didn’t have a lot of faith. Boy, was I proven wrong.
Fear Street: Part Two (aptly titled 1978) feels a lot more consistent in its tone and ideas, managing to pay tribute to slashers of the past while developing the lore and ideas of part one in a much more consistent way.
Here, the story whisks us back to Camp Nightwing for a tale that pays homage to Friday the 13th and other summer camp slashers.
That aforementioned tone is much more consistent this time around too, with a brief introduction paving way for a simple but effective story centered around teens in 1978.
Before we get there though, the story opens with Deena and Josh restraining Sam as they head off to C. Berman’s house for help in dealing with the Sarah Fier curse.
In order to understand more though, we jump back to Camp Nightwing in 1978. There, we uncover the gruesome secrets that Summer held.
At the center of all this is Ziggy Berman, a Shadyside camper who’s caught in the middle of a camp rivalry with the moneyed kids of Sunnyvale. Tensions are high, and that’s only accentuated further when a possessed Nurse Lane is taken away on a stretcher.
The kids are convinced it’s the doing of Sarah Fier, and it doesn’t take long for this axe-wielding maniac to turn up. He hacks at anything that moves in a quest for revenge. Accompanying Ziggy in this fight for survival are a whole host of campers, including Ziggy’s older sister, Cindy.
There’s also a whole ensemble of supporting players here too; the cliched ghosts of slasher’s past. You’ve got your nerds, jocks, virgins and horny teens, all mixed together in this simple but bloody middle chapter of the Fear Street trilogy.
The story itself is pretty run of the mill but what’s particularly impressive about this installment is just how tonally on-point everything feels.
The music choices are much better implemented into the story. The make-up and costume department have dressed the sets appropriately. While the whole film feels more like an homage rather than a copy-paste of what’s come before.
The bickering and arguments that bogged down large parts of the first part – especially contrived bouts of shouting – are stripped out this time and there’s even a nice little twist at the end as well.
This ending hints that we’ve got a pretty dramatic final chapter to come, and after a lackluster start Fear Street finally feels like it’s living up to its premise. It’s far from perfect but this second part is a much, much better offering. Roll on part 3!