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Fear Street Trilogy (1994, 1978, 1666)

Fear Street is originally based on the book series written by R. L. Stine. From the title itself, both the movies and the books’ genre is horror. Netflix released the first part of the trilogy Fear Street: 1994 on June 28, the second part which is 1978 was released on July 8 and the last part, 1666 was released on July 14. As its weekly release, the trilogy gained more attention and viewers. It had fans anticipating each upcoming movie.

The trilogy consists of different cast members. The first part and the second have a completely different set of artists who portrayed the character in both movies. While in the last part, most of the characters and cast from 1994 and 1978 are in it. The trilogy has some amazing actors that include Kiana Madeira as Deena Johnson in 1994 and Sarah Fier in 1666, Olivia Scott Welch as Samantha Fraser a.k.a. Sam in 1994 and Hannah Miller in 1666, Julia Rehwald as Kate Schmidt in 1994 and Lizzie in 1666. The first part also includes Benjamin Flores Jr. as Deena’s brother, Josh Johnson in 1994 and Sarah Fier’s brother, Henry Fier in 1666, Fred Hechinger as Simon Kalivoda in 1994 and Isaac in 1666, Ashley Zukerman portrays the sheriff named Nick Goode in 1994 and Solomon Goode in 1666.

Fear Street: 1994

“She’ll take your blood, she’ll take your head. She’ll follow you until you’re dead.”

The movie starts off with the Skull Mask Killer who kills a bunch of employees at the Shadyside Mall. In some movies, most of the serial killers aren’t identified yet, not until the last part of the movie. In this trilogy, the first few minutes show that the Skull Mask Killer is identified as an employee at the mall who goes by the name, Ryan Torres. Moments later, Deena Johnson is seen writing a hate letter to some ex-lover of hers. Her brother Josh, comes in having an online conversation with a mysterious girl, discussing what happened at the Shadyside Mall. It is pointed out that the one at fault is the witch from the year 1666 named Sarah Fier.

The director of the trilogy and the co-writer of the three screenplays, Leigh Janiak, has done an excellent job adapting R.L. Stine's stories for the big screen. Janiak imbues the films with a stylistic vibrancy by employing a plethora of humorous genre tropes. Overt references to classic horror films are accompanied with motifs, such as when Simon mentions a survival method he learned from "Poltergeist” which is the body of the witch being left “undisturbed," but Deena disagrees stating that their situation at that moment is a real-life situation and not the one from the movies where they can solve a problem just by doing a simple thing. One can agree that Deena is right by the fact that you can’t apply what happened in the movies to what is happening in real life because at some point they are clueless as to why it is happening to Sam and how it happened.

As the whole movie goes on, sacrifices have been made to save Sam from the undead killers. Their deaths are tragic and one cannot disagree that they have the most painful death and sacrifice in the movie. After the tragic night, they are interviewed by the Sheriff and everything went back to normal, not until someone made a phone call to Deena who is C. Berman, the one that they called to ask for help.

This first part of fear street ends on a cliffhanger to viewers, especially to the original R. L. Stine Fear Street fans. Fear Street feels different than any other movie. It is like those Marvel Movies that have after-credits scenes that leave viewers confused and asking questions on what will happen next. “Fear Street” isn't a blood-and-guts metaphor about suburban privilege where everyone will die and there is no proper plot of the story. More than that, it's a jumble of gore and nostalgia presented through the eyes of a charming band of adolescent rebels, and this kind of strength was presented in the second part of the trilogy, Fear Street: 1978.

Fear Street: 1978

“Before the witch’s final breath, she found a way to cheat her death. Like cutting off her cursed hand, she kept her grip upon the land.”

Fear Street 1978 is the continuation of Fear Street 1994. As the first movie ended with Sam stabbing Deena while she’s on a phone call, Deena and her brother Josh managed to tie up Sam, and off they went to C. Berman’s house for answers. C. Berman didn't want to help them at first but eventually made them sit as she told them her story. She started by showing them a picture saying, “This was July 12th. The Summer of 1978. The first day of camp. A week later my sister was dead.”

C. Berman, known as Ziggy along with her sister is in Camp Nightwing. They experience a tragic night which leads them to their misery. They know that the witch was the one who cursed the land, they know that reuniting the witch’s hand with the body will end the curse. What they do is sacrifice for their homeland, to save everyone else from being cursed and dead.

The story starts at a place called ‘Camp Nightwing’ wherein kids/teenagers from Shadyside and Sunnyvale camp together and interact with one another. The first few scenes of the movie show C. Berman who is a rebel that always causes a lot of trouble at camp. She is known for her nickname Ziggy. Her sister is also introduced named Cindy along with her boyfriend Tommy. Since Ziggy is from Shadyside, some kids around her age bully her for being a witch or being possessed by the witch, Sarah Fier. She is accused of stealing money from the Sunnyvaler’s cabin and was about to be sent home by the captain until someone saved her by telling them that she deserves another chance of being there. The person who convinces the captain of the camp was Nick Goode, known as the sheriff from the first movie.

Fear Street 1978 is a great spinoff of the first part of the movie. Viewers actually thought that 1978 is where the curse would end because of what Ziggy and Cindy did by reuniting the hand with the body, but a major plot twist happened. The good thing about this movie is that we were introduced to another set of killers namely the Nightwing killer who was Tommy in the first movie and a lot of people didn’t expect that he was the killer with a mask and an axe. The movie also introduced Ruby Lane’s mother who was trying to find the witch’s cave to find answers as to why her daughter suddenly became a serial killer. The casting in this movie was perfect, Sadie Sink who plays Ziggy executed her role as the ‘rebel’ very well and Emily Rudd as Cindy who was the ‘perfect’ one between the two of them. The flow of the story was good. It answered a few questions that I’m sure a lot of fans/viewers had in their minds. It also created a whole new theory on what the last part of Fear Street is about. Since the ending scene of 1978 was Deena getting to live the life of Sarah Fier, will 1666 answer the questions as to why Sarah Fier cursed Shadyside? Will there be another major plot twist of the story where viewers will be expecting something is supposed to happen but it will turn out as false assumptions?

Fear Street: 1666

"The truth will come out. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow, but it will. The truth shall be your curse."

Deena finally knows about the truth. She knows the one at fault. She knows who’s behind all of the bad things that happen at Shadyside. She now knows how to end the curse, but before she could do that, there were challenges along the way.

Fear Street 1978 ended with Deena back in the year 1666. Fear Street 1666 started with Deena as Sarah Fier. The movie establishes Sarah Fier, living a simple life in a small town called, Shadyside. A lot of people know her. Every time she passes by her friends she says “A full moon rises before nightfall.” to which they respond with “Good night to enjoy the fruits of the land.” This callout means that they are gonna have a get-together in the woods by midnight as the full moon rises. As she went down the road, she passed by Hannah Miller’s house, the daughter of the pastor, Cyrus Miller. In this scene, Sarah finds out that Hannah will be joining her and their friends by the woods tonight.

As the full moon rises, Sarah, her friends and a group of people around their age head to the woods to hang out, sing and dance. Lizzie gives them the berries that they got from Widow Mary’s haven. The berries are like drugs that can make them high and that’s what happened to most of them. Sarah and Hannah go to the woods further, away from everybody.

From the endearing brother-sister combination of Madeira and Flores Jr to an extended role for Gillian Jacobs, who gives a strong Laurie Strode vibes, to Darrell Britt-Gibson accomplishing the impossible: non-annoying slasher comedy support, the acting is once again a huge sell. The cast's unrelenting energy makes it impossible not to board their glitzed-up Mystery Machine. While there will be many takeaways from the trilogy's success, careful casting will undoubtedly be near the top. Fear Street is rumored to have a part four but we are not yet so sure about that. The director, Leigh Janiak has found a way to breathe fresh life into old material, giving us the rare horror series that makes us want more rather than less, making the possibility of a larger world seem like a joy rather than a curse. Overall, I would rate this trilogy a 10/10.


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