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Stage Fright
     

Stage Fright

4.3 3
Director: Michele Soavi

Cast: David Brandon, Barbara Cupisti, Ulrike Schwerk

 

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Before director Michele Soavi made a name for himself on this side of the Atlantic with films like The Church and the fantastically bizarre cult favorite Cemetery Man starring Rupert Everett, he made this stylish satire of the slasher film subgenre. Winner of numerous genre film awards, Stagefright also earned Soavi

Overview

Before director Michele Soavi made a name for himself on this side of the Atlantic with films like The Church and the fantastically bizarre cult favorite Cemetery Man starring Rupert Everett, he made this stylish satire of the slasher film subgenre. Winner of numerous genre film awards, Stagefright also earned Soavi the chance to direct the second unit on Terry Gilliam's bloated fantasy epic The Adventures of Baron Munchausen after Gilliam saw the film at a Brussels film festival. Working on Munchausen helped further his career in Italy and abroad, although rabid fans of this feature knew all along that Soavi was going to go places. Anchor Bay Entertainment's disc unfortunately lacks any extras other than a bio for Soavi and a theatrical trailer. Nevertheless, the availability of this title on DVD is worth it alone since the title has been regulated to the "gray market" videotape realm for far too long. The film is presented in its proper aspect ratio of 1.85:1 (enhanced) and in both a decent two-channel soundtrack and a very rich five-channel track. There are some crackling and some minor audio distortion with the two-channel option, although nothing too distracting. But the five-channel track is definitely the way to go with this one. The picture is a bit soft and the colors (especially the reds) tend to flare at times, but overall the transfer looks fine.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
This late European entry into the slasher-film cycle is a good example of how style can triumph over substance in a genre effort. The script doesn't offer much in the way of characterization -- the victims fall into distinct types and the killer is the usual slasher-film cipher -- but Stage Fright does offer a unique theatrical setting and small-time showbiz milieu that gives the tale some added flavor. The actors are do above-average work for this kind of film, with top honors going to David Brandon as the troupe's Machiavellian director and John Morghen as an amusingly bitchy actor. However, the best element of Stage Fright is Michele Soavi's direction. This protégé of Dario Argento made his directorial debut here and his work shows a tremendous sense of craft for a first-timer: his pacing is nice and lean, with a good knack for timing when it comes to the shocks. Even better, he has an eye for artful design amongst the carnage and combines this visual sense with his craftsmanship to create some tense setpieces: the best is a moment involving an attempt to retrieve a key right under the killer's nose. Ultimately, Stage Fright is primarily for the horror audience but they are likely to enjoy its visually inventive approach to the usually humdrum slasher subgenre.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/19/2002
UPC:
0013131175493
Original Release:
1987
Rating:
NR
Source:
Starz / Anchor Bay
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital, stereo]
Time:
1:32:00

Special Features

Widescreen presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16 x 9 TVs; Theatrical trailer; Michele Soavi bio

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Program Start/Main Titles [:53]
2. Dance of Death [3:26]
3. Artistic Genius [4:11]
4. Rehearsing Rape [3:25]
5. Trip to the Nuthouse [4:19]
6. Missing Madman [3:44]
7. Jawbreaker [4:15]
8. Free Publicity [3:47]
9. The Show Must Go On [3:14]
10. Wardrobe Change [5:17]
11. Butcher's Blade [4:46]
12. A Fool and His Money... [3:54]
13. Lunatic on the Loose [3:37]
14. Driller Killer [4:07]
15. Stalking the Stalker [5:38]
16. Peter Loses His Head [4:04]
17. Bloodbath [3:27]
18. Armed and Dangerous [4:40]
19. Stage Fright [3:57]
20. The Key to Freedom [3:04]
21. Alicia's Last Stand [4:48]
22. Sole Survivor [3:25]
23. Vision of the Dead [2:27]
24. End Credits [1:33]

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Stage Fright 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
"Stage Fright" is one of the best and unusual slasher/horror movies ever made. It deals with a play production crew: cruel actress, rich sponsor, costume designer, malicious director, mellow producer, an acting couple in love, gay extra, rejected actress, and stage manager all locked in their playhouse with a psychotic killer named Irving, who went mad and killed 16 actors before. As the cast begins to succumb to numerous horrific deaths, the remaining victims begin to turn on eachother, until Irving is pitted against one actress, who has him hanging by his thumbs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Stage Fright is one of the best horror movies ever, it is definately an above average slasher flick. Stage Fright is about a play crew: evil, mean actress, nice producer, gay extra, rejected actress, cruel director, two acting lovers, seamstress, money sponsor, and stage manager, who are all locked in their playhouse with a berserk psycho, named Irving, who killed 16 actors before. But the movie gets better, once Irving is pitted against one smart actress, who really knows what she's doing. One of Michael Sioavi and Dario Argento's bests ever!!!!