Stage Fright (no, not that one) is an Italian slasher horror that also goes under the name of Deliria, StageFright, StageFright: Aquarius, Aquarius, and Bloody Bird. It was directed by Michael Soavi and stars Barbara Cupisti, David Brandon, and Giovanni Lombardo Radice.
A very artsy looking horror, the impressive visual style of the movie lifts it out of the doldrums of being just another slasher flick.
At a local mental facility, a crazed killer has escaped and makes his way to a nearby theatre. There, a group of actors and the crew have been working hard to be ready for the opening of their new musical. A musical about a fictional murderer known as the Night Owl. Rehearsals aren’t going to well but made all the worse when one of the actresses is killed by the escaped lunatic.
Her body is found and the police called. Believing that the killer has fled, the police leave just two officers stationed outside. While inside the director is inspired. Inspired to change the play’s script and insistent that the actors and crew stay inside to rehearse the new material.
Of course, the killer hasn’t gone far. So it’s not long before the bodies begin to pile up.
Stage Fright would be little more then a mediocre slasher if it wasn’t for the aforementioned visual quality. The movie has a real dream-like style to it. So much so that you kind of expect it to have all been a dream at the end. It’s not though and sudden, uber violent flashes snap it back into reality.
An oversized cast gives us plenty of blood and guts to enjoy and Stage Fright isn’t shy when it comes to spreading it about. There are some really visceral moments improved by some top notch effects too. This killer doesn’t stick to one particular weapon, he likes his variety and he likes to be brutal.
As for his victims, there isn’t anyone who really stands out but some of the actresses do well when it comes to ramping up the tension. A shower scene in particular is nicely done.
A strong ending is the feather in this cap. Making Stage Fright an 80’s slasher well worth checking out. It tries harder then most and has some genuinely good moments.