Tom Humberstone

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horror month - day 11

Starry Eyes (2014)

Quick summary: Aspiring actor Sarah juggles attending soul-crushing auditions and working at an exploitative diner until she's offered the role of a lifetime by a satanic cult.

I mean, I'm surprised this is the first time I've come across a horror film with this premise. It's perfect. The first half of the film's horror/satire focuses on depressing LA parties, the grim waitressing job, and constant Hollywood rejection - all of which reminded me - in a good way - of indie comedies like Swingers and Office Space. There's a careful balance of humour, satire, and horror in this half of the film before it turns to shocking violence, body horror, and gore for it's gruesome final act.

Great John Carpenter-esque synthy score throughout. And it feels like it has elements of Polanski, Black Swan, The Stepford Wives and Faust all mixed up in there.

It's a great film about the dark-side of ambition and how it can destroy you from the inside-out as well as everyone around you. It's about the choices we make, the promise of fame, the lure of the spotlight and, if I'm not mistaken, there's some jabs at Scientology in there. I reckon you could curate a successful double-bill of this with Going Clear.

Tonight: I'm going to watch Theatre of Blood (1973) and The Stone Tape (1972) if I can fit it in.