Featured DVD Review: Fred 2: Night of the Living Fred
Fred 2: Night of the Living Fred is the second movie starring Lucas Cruikshank as Fred Figglehorn. For those who don't know, Fred Figglehorn was an YouTube sensation and combined his videos were seen more than 800 million times. I'm not in the legion of his fans and quite far outside of his target demographic (tweens), but I have seen many other films and TV shows aimed at the same target demographic, so I should be able to tell how strong this one is in comparison.
The film begins with Fred in a panic... Get used to that. He explains that his favorite teacher, Mrs. Felson, has disappeared. He suspects foul play, but given her age, she probably just retired. She's been replaced by Devlin, who, to be fair to Fred, is a scary man and doesn't make the best first impression. However, Fred quickly jumps to a number of wild theories about his new teacher. (Psycho killer, alien invader, etc. and eventually settles on Vampire). This is not the only scary part of Fred's life, as he is stalked on the way home from school by Talia. Fred hopes his best friend, Bertha, will comfort him in his time of need, but she's not the comforting type and she just goads him into confronting his fears. Turns out Talia is a nice girl, if a little obsessed with Fred. Also, for a bit, Fred thinks she is a ghost.
He's got an overactive imagination.
That night, he and his Mom are invited to a welcoming party for Devlin at Kevin's place. Kevin is Fred's Wang Chung obsessed nemesis. As expected, he has a terrible time, (especially after he finds out Talia is Kevin's little sister) but his mom is charmed by Devlin and soon after the party, they start dating.
This is gone too far and Fred has to put an end to this.
So how does this film compare to the first Fred movie? It's quite an improvement actually. Many of the negatives of the first film are toned down this time around. Fred's hyperactivity is much less intrusive and I believe his voice is a pitch or two lower. His dysfunctional family life is more normalized. And, there's also an actual story worth watching found within the craziness. (Paranoia brought on by the internet, rumors can ruin people, don't judge others, and respect diversity.) The two additions to the cast Daniella Monet and Ariel Winter also add to the overall quality. In fact, Talia's sock puppet scene was probably the funniest part of the whole movie. Although I do like Jennette McCurdy and Pixie Lott, who were in the first film but not in this one, (outside of a short cameo for the latter).
The extras include a seven-minute making of featurette, a five-minute look at Lucas Cruikshank's home town, a three-minute look at Lucas Cruikshank's rise to fame, and three behind-the-scenes featurettes with Fred in character. It's only about 20 minutes in total, but that's better than a lot of similar releases.
The first Fred movie was pretty bad, even compared to the average for the target audience. Fred 2: Night of the Living Fred made a few adjustments that helped improve the show. It still likely won't appeal to Fred haters, but most fans will agree that it is the much better film. There are not a lot of extras on the DVD, but since it costs just $8, it is a bargain compared to getting it on Video on Demand.
- Submitted by: C.S.Strowbridge
Date posted: 2012-02-06