FEAR STREET PART ONE: 1994 (2021) Reviews and now with behind-the-scenes featurette

 

Fear Street Part One: 1994 is a 2021 American mystery horror film about a murder that shakes up the town of Shadyside, Ohio. The film is part of a three-film series directed for Netflix by Leigh Janiak. Fear Street Part Two: 1978 and Fear Street Part Three: 1666 are the other two instalments.

Directed by Leigh Janiak (Scream: The TV Series; Honeymoon) from a screenplay co-written with Phil Graziadei, based on the book by R.L. Stine.

The  Chernin Entertainment production stars Gillian Jacobs, Fred Hechinger, Olivia Welch, Sadie Sink, Ashley Zukerman, Charlene Amoia, Kiana Madeira and Emily Brobst.

Reviews:

Fear Street Part 1: 1994 has an awkward start but finds its footing not too long after and delivers the goods in all the right ways. A blood-soaked neon nod to the ’90s, when things hit, they hit hard. This is a solid introduction to a world worth exploring […] Just know that this doesn’t quite figure itself out until the second act, and you’re sure to enjoy what comes after.” Arrow in the Head

Part 1 infuses infectious energy that makes it a compelling and entertaining watch. The kills delight, and the storyline bring plenty of thrills and chills. It’s well-crafted and a visual feast, even if it can lean a bit too hard on its soundtrack to sell the period.” Bloody Disgusting

“If you are a slasher fanatic, you should be foaming at the mouth for Fear Street. The kills keep coming, and trust me, the gore will make gorehounds howl with delight. There is nothing kid-friendly with the killings […] You need good characters to try and survive a slasher, and Fear Street gives you multiple to root for.” Bulletproof Action

“Janiak’s direction is crisp, full of flair (it’s a hyper-coloured palette) telling a tale with genuine surprises. As the death toll rises, it’s tough to guess who makes it to the end credits — that, in a genre often marked by crushing predictability, is no mean feat. Fear Street Part 1: 1994 is a wild ride through ’90s horror tropes that somehow feels affectionate and fresh.” Empire

” …like the slashers of old, it knows how to have fun […] But best of all, Janiak and company manage to make their teen heroes (and potential victims) likable. We start to care about these kids, which makes some of their gruesome demises surprisingly upsetting. This is not the type of slasher where you’re cheering about the body count. No one is safe here, but you’ll start to wish they were.” /Film

“There’s real, seat-edge fun to be had here, the sort of fun that’s too often missing from modern horror (we saw a glimpse of it in last year’s equally well-balanced Freaky), whether it be a result of a stony-faced attempt to fit into the so-called “elevated” sub-genre or an overreliance on nausea-inducing nastiness (there’s gore here but, vitally, other things too).” The Guardian

” …its opening is reminiscent of another famous film in the slasher genre where the connections were so obvious that they were almost laughable. That being said, it still provided some solid entertainment. Once the film moves on from that homage, its actual story behind the macabre murders in Shadyside isn’t all that bad.” Keith Loves Movies

” …to say the plot begins to feel overly contrived around the halfway mark would be a bit of an understatement. And yet, the “everything but the kitchen sink” approach employed by Janiak and fellow screenwriter Phil Graziadei works surprisingly well, because the film is just so damn fun.” The Lamplight Review

“Save for a late flurry when Janiak seems to pay tribute to Scott Spiegel’s cult supermarket slasher Intruder, there’s very little here to satisfy fans of the slasher sub-genre. With its focus on teen dynamics and non-stop needle drops, it’s more likely to find an audience among fans of Netflix shows like Riverdale and Stranger Things. Maybe that’s the point.” The Movie Waffler

” …from the atmosphere to the performances to the writing, you are going to eagerly want to see the second part as soon as the credits roll. And, if that is not a testament to the quality of this first installment, I’m not sure what to tell you.” Nightmarish Conjurings

“Nothing is watered down or off limits for Kyle Killen’s screenplay, moving Fear Street: 1994 beyond cliches and excelling in pulpy B-movie craftsmanship […] Perhaps “1994” will encourage today’s youth to seek out the expansive catalog of slasher hits, but they should rightfully take ownership of this title because it deserves to be in the conversation among the greats.” The Only Critic

Fear Street Part 1: 1994 totally slays at combining the Fear Street teen novel series and the thriller atmosphere of the 90’s teen slasher films that were in its peak of those days. Reminiscent of all the Scream movies, I Know What You Did Last Summer films, Halloween H20, and Urban Legends to name a few. An upgrade to an R rating as there is excessive profanity, a fear setting that stirs the sex drive, and of course, the blood and gore.” Punch Drunk Critics

“Despite some familiar moments and broad characterization (we are shown that Deena doesn’t fit in because she listens to Creep by Radiohead, etc.), the first half of the movie is a rip-roaring, fitfully scary affair […] That is until the second half, which slowly descends into a series of staid cliches and uninteresting shocks that end up having little impact on the plot.” Ready Steady Cut

” …strikes a great balance between building backstory and tying it into the chaotic present-day: the mythology settles in, and the movie focuses on lean and extra mean thrills that include a couple of excellent slasher set-pieces in the high school and a grocery store, all with an expressive, playful lighting palette. The most fun parts of 1994 display a strong balance of the brutal and the playful…” RogerEbert.com

” …offers plenty of grisly thrills, with up-to-the-minute casting and one rather subversive twist […] If the characters can occasionally get on your nerves just like their counterparts in the ’80s/’90s slashers did, they actors are all energetic and ultimately sympathetic enough to keep you hoping they’ll defeat the evil plaguing them.” Rue Morgue

Fear Street 1994 is an engaging story, with characters you want to see survive (and a few you’re happy when they don’t), a great new mythology, and an ending that both sets up for the next film in this trilogy, and possibly one that follows to the future. Janiak knocks it out of the park.” Screen Anarchy

“The kill sequences are genuinely shocking, the violence brutal. At the same time, old slasher archetypes are updated with a diverse young cast and heartfelt romance. It’s easy to be cynical about the proliferation of cinematic universes and Stranger Things copycats. But when The Algorithm works? It works.” Starburst

” …you got rivaling towns, teens selling drugs, so many psychopath killers who kill in notably violent ways, and nearly everyone’s presence on screen is welcomed, and when they are gone, you miss them. Hence the recommendation label because, while maybe not the smartest horror film you may have seen of late, it is one of the most entertaining by far.” Wherever I Look

Background:

Leigh Janiak commented: “As a filmmaker making Fear Street, but also just as a movie lover, I was so excited to pay homage to some of the great eras of horror movies. For 1994, Scream stood above all rest — it’s peak ’90s horror and, I think, one of the most brilliant movies ever made, period. Then for 1978, I got to look at the heyday of slasher films – Friday the 13th, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street. For 1666…I found the best inspiration for me lay in the beautiful world made rotten of Terence Malick’s The New World.”

R.L. Stine has said: “The thing that ties Fear Street to people all over the world is that we all have the same fears. It doesn’t matter what country you’re in, everyone is afraid of the dark, or afraid somebody’s lurking in the closet, or afraid of being in some strange new place they’ve never been before. We all have the same fears.”

Release date:

Fear Street Part One: 1994 was streamed on Netflix from July 2, 2021.

Cast and characters:

Gillian Jacobs … C. Berman
Fred Hechinger … Simon
Olivia Welch … Samantha Fraser
Sadie Sink … Ziggy Berman
Ashley Zukerman … Sheriff Nick Goode
Charlene Amoia … Rachel Thompson
Kiana Madeira … Deena
Emily Brobst … Billy Barker
Darrell Britt-Gibson … Martin
Benjamin Flores Jr. … Josh
David W. Thompson … Ryan Torres
Emily Rudd … Cindy Berman
Jeremy Ford … Peter
Matthew Zuk … Mayor Will Goode
Jana Allen … TV Reporter
Jordyn DiNatale
Diane Sellers … Check-in Nurse
Alex Huff … Mean Sunnyval Jailer
Lacy Camp
Todd Allen Durkin … Officer Kapinsky
Matt Burke … Football Coach
Julia Rehwald … Kate
Kevin Waterman … Milkman
McCabe Slye … Tommy Slater
Matt Markopoulos … Mall Patron
Michael Chandler … Pastor Cyrus Miller

Filming locations:

Atlanta, Georgia
East Point, Georgia
North Dekalb Mall – 2050 Lawrenceville Highway, Decatur, Georgia
Hard Labor Creek State Park – Fairplay Road, Rutledge, Georgia

Filming dates:

11th March 2019 to 1st September 2019

Technical details:

105 minutes
Audio: Dolby Digital
Aspect ratio: 2.39: 1

Teaser trailer:

Trailer 1:

Trailer 2:

First five minutes clip:

Behind-the-scenes featurette:

Easter eggs:

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