Fear Street Part One: 1994 Review – Fear Begins

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As I mentioned when I brought you the Fear street teaser, the trilogy kicked off on July 2 with fear of the streets, part one. This segment, as you should be able to guess from the extended title, takes place waaaay in the olden days of 1994. As a Senior 90s B-Word, I’m excited. But did this film meet my expectations? Let’s get into it.

fear of the streets, part one: A long time ago, in a place called 1994

If you’ve never read the RL Stine book series that inspired this trilogy, there is only one thing you need to know. Okay, maybe two. First, the story takes place in the city of Shadyside. And two, like The murder she wrote‘s Cabot Cove, Shadyside has a surprising death rate. Once we joined the Shadysiders in the 90s, it didn’t improve.

In fact, sudden, random killings are so common in the city’s history that its teenagers are starting to wonder. Why have so many perfectly normal townspeople just stood up and cracked? The children think that something else must be happening. And of course, they are right.

It’s just abstract, however. It only becomes real to them when it becomes a pressing threat. By the time they wake up, we have already witnessed the outbreak of a series of murders. However, children inadvertently trigger the start of another. So now they have to stop it.

Final daughters: the beginning

image via Netflix

Deena (Kiana Madeira) lives in Shadyside with her brother, Josh (Benjamin Flores, Jr). Unsurprisingly, however, Shadyside is sort of a dead end town. (Yeah, weird.) Deena had a girlfriend, Samantha (Olivia Scott Welch), but after Sam’s parents divorced, her mother moved them both to the nearby town of Sunnyvale.

Sunnyvale is a lot richer than Shadyside and a lot nicer in general – no weird history of murders in the city here. And Sam didn’t necessarily want to leave Deena, but she’s trying to make the most of her new life. Unfortunately, however, she cannot stop the clashes between Sunnyvale and her Old Town.

It’s one of those clashes that triggers the domino effect that ends in murder and mayhem, as well as danger to Deena, Sam, Josh, and their other friends. Can the trio, with Kate (Julia Rehwald) and Simon (Fred Hechinger), figure out what’s causing all this terror? And once they do, can they put a stop to it? (Probably not yet – this is only the first film in the trilogy, after all.)

The Street of Fear, Part 1: 1994 – The article

fear of the street part one image via Netflix

It shouldn’t come as a shock that my first measurement for this movie was, does it look like the 90s? And yes, for the most part, it is. I was a little unsure about some details, like Josh using an AOL chat room, for example. While AOL existed at this time, it was not widely used. And most people didn’t even have a computer at home.

Anyway, they really want it to look like the ’90s, so they drown us in’ 90s needle drops. Again, as a 90s aficionado, I don’t mind the everything, although their volume can be annoying. (Also, what was their music budget? Because damn it.)

To continue, my second measure was even more obvious: is this a good movie? Fortunately, the answer is the same – yes, for the most part. Let’s start with the negative first.

Since it was a good movie, most of the time there weren’t a lot of downsides for me. One of the main ones, however, was the pace. I felt like this movie was dragging a bit in the middle. However, if you can get over that bump, then it’s okay.

Because there is that “big part” – the movie as a whole, which is a good throwback. It is also a more than competent tribute, both to the slashers of the 90s (as Scream) and the series of books that gave birth to this whole operation. It sounds a lot more R-rated than the books have ever been, but it fits in with its slasher vibe.

It’s also just nasty fun. I had never seen Madeira before, but I was already impressed with Welch, which I recently saw in Amazon Panic (which you should also watch). Their relationship, as well as their obvious placement as Final Girls (maybe), makes you want to support them. This city is not good, but they are. And the same goes for this film, which prepares us well for this week’s episode, which comes to us live from 1978 (so old!). And I’ll be back with this review later this week.

The Street of Fear, Part 1: 1994 is now available on Netflix.

Have you watched the first part of Fear street trilogy? Let us know what you thought of it, by commenting here or on our social media.

featured image via Netflix

Salomé Gonstad is a freelance writer who grew up in the swampy nature of southern Alabama. When she’s not screaming about internet pop culture, she’s working on a supernatural thriller about her hometown. Plus, we’re pretty sure she’s a werewolf. Email him at [email protected]


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