While the sequel to Fear Street: 1994 loses some of the luster of the first entry, at the very least, it ends strong.
|Screenplay By||Zak Olkewicz, Leigh Janiak|
|Where Can You Watch?||Netflix|
|Genre(s)||Action, Drama, Horror, Romance, Thriller, Young Adult, LGBT|
|Duration||1 Hour 50 Minutes|
|MPAA Rating||Rated R|
|Josh||Benjamin Flores Jr.|
|Young Will||Brandon Spink|
|Young Nick||Ted Sutherland|
|Ziggy (1994)||Gillian Jacobs|
|Ziggy (1978)||Sadie Sink|
For nearly four hours, after Deena and Josh break into her house, Ziggy, aka C. Berman, recounts what happened from July 12th, 1978, to the day her sister died on July 19th, 1978. During this tale, we learn the Goode brothers, the current mayor of Sunnyvale, Will, alongside the now sheriff Nick, were there that summer and even interacted with Ziggy and her older sister Cindy. However, it wasn’t until Cindy’s square of a boyfriend, Tommy, found himself becoming the man with the burlap sack over his head we saw in Fear Street: 1994 that people truly grew closer, despite Tommy’s axe splitting them apart.
Things To Note | Question(s) Left Unanswered
Reason(s) for Film Rating
- Brief Nudity: You’ll see bare ass and briefly see breasts
- Gore: Prep for people having axes go through their skulls, heads cut off, and even bones protruding through the skin
- Profanity: It’s not excessive, but prepare for a handful of curse words
- Blood: Between splitting up blood to an almost comical display of blood spurting while someone is getting killed, prep to see red dye #5.
Question(s) Left Unanswered
- Did the nurse move the body, or was it someone long before her?
- Was that a beating heart buried beneath the camp?
Young Ziggy & Her Romance With Young Nick
On her own, and when paired with Ted Sutherland, Sadie Sink makes Fear Street: 1978 watchable. As shown when she entered the Netflix family with Stranger Things, alongside her role in Eli, she can be the hook to get you interested in a production and bring value beyond name recognition. For while Ziggy is a tough cookie, repping what is expected from someone who lives in Shadyside, Sink somehow doesn’t make Ziggy feel like a trope that you’ve seen countless times.
But perhaps what is imperative to compliment is that, even when they soften Ziggy by noting her relationship with her older sister, Cindy, and you see her and Nick have multiple cute moments, it doesn’t diminish the character. Rather, Cindy and Nick compliment Ziggy rather than strip her of what made her stand out and awesome.
And just to touch upon Nick and Ziggy further, truly, their Romeo and Juliet vibe was perhaps only second to Deena and Sam, in terms of couples introduced in the trilogy thus far. For beyond showing, as much of a tomboy as she appears, Ziggy does desire intimacy and to feel comfortable in being vulnerable, it allows Nick to do the same.
With Ziggy and her alone, despite the power dynamic issue of him being a counselor and her attending the camp, he finds safety in talking about the pressure to live up to his father’s legacy and become a cop. Heck, I’d even say, him behaving badly with Ziggy might have been the first time he got to escape expectations and be free. Which makes Ziggy and Nick not having much of a relationship in 1994 a bit heartbreaking.
Alice & Cindy’s Friendship
When it comes to Alice and Cindy, their romantic relationships don’t do them, nor the movie, any favors. Arnie presents the idea Alice will be this rebel Cindy used to hang out with that just wants to get high and have sex with her boyfriend. Then with Tommy, before he becomes a serial killer, he is just dull. While Nick is given this backstory that makes you value him as an individual, Tommy is ultimately just the boy who ends up another one of Sarah’s minions.
So, we’re thankful Arnie doesn’t stick around too long, and this leads to Cindy and Alice focusing on their relationship. Be it Cindy betraying Alice or Alice talking about her ultimately understanding why Cindy did it. Through Alice exposing her pain, secrets and having a platonic intimacy with Cindy, it reminds you how rare it is to see two young women in a horror movie be friends and share a moment rooted in true friendship. I’d even say, after a certain point, their conversations pass the Bechdel Test. Especially as Alice goes into her personal history and how she feels subject to the Shadyside curse, beyond worries about an axe murderer running around.
No One Was Safe
Kids being killed in horror movies aren’t the norm – especially tweens. But in Fear Street: 1978, whether you are a boy or girl, seem like you can maybe defend yourself or not, you get killed. It isn’t like Friday the 13th, which you can compare this to, when it was just teenagers and young adults. Which, during our viewing, kept us on our toes. For it really does push the idea that Sarah’s vengeance knows no bounds and she doesn’t discriminate – at all.
At Times, This Film Drags
As noted above, except for Nick, the majority of the guys in this film drag the film down in terms of pacing and take away the high you may have gotten from the first film. The reason we say this is, it’s clear that the writers felt there was no need to invest in characters who wouldn’t be used throughout the trilogy. So if they were going to be killed off or just become mindless murderers for most of the trilogy, why make them compelling? Why put them on equal footing with Nick and be complex characters? Thus making the time span between us venturing into Ziggy’s past to when the killings start to pick up boring, even when Ruby Lane’s mother tries to kill someone.
Our Rating: Positive (Worth Seeing)
While not as well-paced as Fear Street: 1994, or with the same quality of characters, Fear Street: 1978 does the job and makes it appear, despite a bit of a sophomore slump, the finale could end things with a bang!