A Murderous Performance
StageFright is a horror/musical and Jerome Sable’s feature film directorial debut. It had its world release on March 10th 2014 at South by Southwest. This film was released to VOD on April 3rd and will be in theaters May 9th.
The story revolves around a young girl, Camilla Swanson (Allie MacDonald), who loses her mother Kylie (Minnie Driver) when she is a little girl. Kylie is a Broadway star who is murdered on opening night of a play she is starring in.
We skip forward to Camilla as a teenager where she and her brother are working in the kitchen of the musical theater camp being run by Roger McCall (Meatloaf). When Roger reveals the camp will performing The Haunting of the Opera, Camilla decides she must audition for the starring role as this was the last play her mother was in. Camilla is cast in the starring role and as soon as rehearsals begin, kids start getting murdered.
While I didn’t find this film particularly frightening, I was happy with the level of gore. It wasn’t muted or over the top and there were some cool kills. There were also plenty of elements we all love to see in a slasher. The setting is a summer camp. All but a few of the characters were teenagers or preteens. There is humor as well as some randy behavior but no nudity.
It would not be a proper slasher without a masked killer! This killer reminded me of the killer from 1987s Slumber Party Massacre II. There was even a scene that at least in my opinion seemed to be a nod to Stephen King’s Carrie. Prior to seeing this I’d read a few things online comparing StageFright to a cross between Glee and a horror movie. While Meatloaf, Allie MacDonald, and Minnie Driver are all talented singers they were not singing Top 40 tunes.
I enjoyed Meatloaf in the lead adult role and thought he carried the movie well. I also thought Allie MacDonald did a good job as the “it” girl. She reminded me physically of a cross between Rumer Willis, Lindsay Lohan, and the late Brittany Murphy. I thought StageFright was fun, humorous, a little brutal, and at times creepy. I do not think it needed or deserved an R rating. Yes, adults will see this film but I think a good portion of its viewers will be kids 11 and up. I’m pretty sure it will not scare most of them. There was not much in the way of foul language either. PG 13 would have been a better rating for this.
LITTLE MISS HORROR NERD’S RATING: 3 out of 5
You can view the first 10 minutes for free here courtesy of HuLu