The short film Nite Nite is writer/director Chad Meisenheimer’s mash-up of two time-honored horror conceits: the child who fears that a monster lurks in the bedroom at night, and the babysitter in peril. At a running time of just about three minutes, the short delivers a satisfying jolt of scary fun for the young and young-at-heart.

One night in 1985, a babysitter (Tommie Vegas of Party Night [2017] and Another Evil Night [2017]) tries putting her young charge (Brady Bond) to bed. He insists that before she leaves the room, she should check in certain areas for monsters, just like his father does. Although she doesn’t believe in monsters, and tells him so, she humors him and then talks to her friend Heather (Sarah Rhodes) on the phone. It is then that things began take a sinister turn.

Chad Meisenheimer takes this lean-and-mean plot and creates an effectively creepy three-minute short. He serves up an atmosphere that would feel right at home on the fondly remembered Are You Afraid of the Dark? or Monsters television series. Tommie Vegas and Brady Bond give nice, realistic performances that feel like there is a bond between the sitter and the boy.

Although Nite Nite may not shock or surprise most long-time horror aficionados, it is still a pleasant short that reminds viewers of what it was like to be a child with a vivid imagination when it was time for “lights out.” It also serves as a family-friendly slice of cinematic spookiness, something that this reviewer fully supports.

Chad Meisenheimer has announced that Nite Nite is the first installment of his Retro Horror Trilogy, with the next chapter being Little Girl in White, starring Denver Marcus and Monique Parent. Nite Nite is beginning its film festival run, and is one to put on your viewing schedule when it heads your way.

(3.8 / 5)

Joseph Perry
Joseph Perry’s formative years were spent watching classic monster movies (starting with "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" and "Godzilla Vs. the Thing") and TV series (starting with "The Twilight Zone" and "Outer Limits"), Bob Wilkins’ "Creature Features" and Roy Shires’ Big Time Wrestling (two northern California legends); reading Silver Age and Bronze Age Gold Key, Dell, Charlton, Marvel, and DC comics; and writing mimeographed newsletters about the original "Planet of the Apes" film and TV series. More recently, he has written for "Filmfax" magazine, is the foreign correspondent reporter for the "Horror News Radio" podcast, and is a regular contributing writer to "Phantom of the Movies’s VideoScope" magazine, occasionally proudly co-writing articles with his son Cohen Perry, who is a film critic in his own right. A former northern Californian and Oregonian, Joseph has been teaching, writing, and living in South Korea since 2008.

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