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Stage Fright (1987)

Richard Barkeley , David Brandon (II)  |  Unrated |  DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Richard Barkeley, David Brandon (II), Barbara Cupisti, Domenico Fiore, Robert Gligorov
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: February 19, 2002
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005RYLB
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #286,992 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Stage Fright" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Michele Soavi biography

Editorial Reviews

Anchor Bay Dvd

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scary,suspenseful, and fun! April 20, 2002
By Nate
Stage Fright is one of the scariest slasher films ever that almost matches up with Halloween and Psycho. The plot is simple:
Alicia, who is working on a play that is about a psycho killer dressed as an owl, hurts her ankle on set and then her costume lady named Betty sneaks her out of rehearsal and takes her to the nearest hospital. But it isn't just a hospital, it ends up being a mental institution! Still, the doctor there agrees to look at Alicia's ankle. Staying at that hospital is Irving Wallace, a beserk actor who took 16 people and "cut them into little pieces!". He is staying there because the court is reviewing his trial. Betty and Alicia go back to the theater when they're done, but they end up bringing Irving Wallace back with them because they forgot to lock the door to the car!
*Spoiler Warining* Soon after Alicia is fired for sneaking out by the director of the play named Peter, who needed her while she was gone. Betty goes back out to her car because she left her lights on and is then murdered by Irving Wallace (I won't say how, it's pretty creative). After the police come and take away her body, Peter tells Newspaper Journalist Mr. Ferrari that he will take Betty's murder as an advertisement and pull opening night back a week to encourage more people to come.
Peter asks 8 people in the production to stay and rehearse all night. They are actors Brett, Laurel, Cibil, Corrine, Danny, Alicia, assistant director Mark, and journalist Farrari. Peter asks Corrine to lock all the doors to the theater and hide the key so nobody will be able to get out and they will have to rehearse all night. Unfortunatly, Irving Wallace gets locked in along with them, and steals Brett's owl costume and walks around the theater with it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stagefright October 21, 2009
Say what you will about Italian horror cinema, from the sixties into the eighties they were some of the best at mixing art and cheese into something more interesting than most other countries. Stagefright is a slasher flick from the eighties and with its opening dance number its a film that feels its age. Apparently a theatre group is rehearsing a play that involves rape, dance sequences and killers dressed in giant bird heads. The director is prick, theres a gay guy, and other assorted characters who start dying when a madman escapes conveniently locking himself in with the troupe and offing them in a bevy of ways (the best on set in an owl mask strangling a girl as the director shouts "Kill Her" for direction).
The film as it is marks the debut of Michele Soavi, one of the names outside of Argento and Bava that marks one of the directors that must be watched. His films might be an aquired taste but they do remain artistically beautiful if perplexing in that arthouse way that the Italians do. The film is very photogenic and beautiful to look at even if it reminds you totally of the decade known as the eighties. The characters are thin with some cliche thrown in which makes it easy to watch when they die, and what the film does well is kill off characters. Plus for a slasher film I will have to say that having a killer wearing a well made owl mask is rather interesting from the perspective of this viewer. The film isn't for all tastes but its fun to view in my opinion.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shocking thriller from the director of Cemetery Man... February 24, 2002
This is the debut film of Michele Soavi, director of the classic Cemetery Man. Soavi, who worked as assistant director to Dario Argento and Lamberto Bava among others, has crafted an intense and stylish slasher about an escaped homicidal maniac stalking the cast and crew of a musical that have decided to base their play on him. With brutally gory scares and an overpowering claustrophobic atmosphere, this has some stunning sequences that outshine many of its American counterparts that came out in the 80's (especially in a scene where one of the castmembers must retrieve a key, in order to escape, from underneath the killers feet!). Look for John Morghen (Gates Of Hell, Make Them Die Slowly) in a small role. This release from Anchor Bay is a great transfer (restored from original Rome vault materials) and is totally uncut.
On a side note- Director Terry Gilliam met Soavi at the Brussels Fantasy Film Festival where Stagefright was being shown.He liked this film so much that he made Soavi a 2nd unit director on his next film-The Adventures Of Baron Munchausen.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Soavi's best December 12, 2009
Out of all the Argento-inspired giallo films of the 1980's, this is one of the best, if not THE best, with it's quirky character banter, quotable lines, off-the-wall camera moves, and phenomenal musical score by Simon Boswell and Stefano Mainetti. I only heard about it thanks to home video because, disappointingly (but certainly not surprisingly), the film was never shown theatrically here in the States. And that, my friends, is a damn shame when you consider that DR. GIGGLES was distributed by Universal Pictures.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HALL -OWL- WEEN March 21, 2002
The first fiction movie of Michele Soavi is a very good surprise for the amateur of horror flicks. I mean of good horror flicks because, believe me or not, those movies exist but you must have a strong stomach and a lot of patience to discover them amidst the vast choice available. STAGE FRIGHT belongs to the peculiar sub-genre of the psycho-thriller, a genre directly inspired by Agatha Christie's AND THEN THEY WERE NONE. Take a dozen innocent victims and a madman with a mask and that's it.
From these premises on, directors reveal their peculiar skills or interests : some are, to speak frankly, would-be surgeons and like to fill the screen with gallons of blood during 90 minutes, some are more interested in the possibility to discover new ways of killing and the others seem to have accepted the job only in order to pay their taxes. Those directors are of no interest to me so I just skip them.
But Michele Soavi's STAGE FRIGHT reveals an authentic filmmaker. Locked in a theater, nine actors and a director must defend themselves against a madman who's just escaped from the local asylum. Like Jason or HALLOWEEN's Michael Myers, this madman wears a mask, the mask of an owl. And that's really innovative and scary. But completely stupid as the audience knows from the beginning of the movie on that the killer is Irving Wallace (not a spoiler), a serial killer.
So, from the moment one understands that the director's purpose is not to revolutionize the genre but rather to pay an homage to his colleagues and to the best scenes presented so far - in 1987 - , the movie stops being only a scary flick and becomes a wonderful journey through the annals of the cinema of horror.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars There's nothing worse than a faithless cat.
More stylish than most, Stage Fright is a slasher flick that takes place in a theater on a dark and stormy night. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Einsatz
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
This is amazing Italian slasher and giallo flick has it all. More chainsaw kills than the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, hilarious dubbing and dialogue, creepy killer in an owl mask,... Read more
Published 2 months ago by oldtree
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Italian Classic!
We all know what its about and it delivers the goods.I prefer the European version because it gives you a widescreen and full frame option. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Schizo Kris
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it...
This is a good horror movie with a lot of twists and turns. I saw this movie years ago and finally ordered a DVD copy. Ii is one of my favorite 80s horror movies.
Published 6 months ago by MissMelpol
5.0 out of 5 stars This movie is fantastic. Its amazing.
You should buy this right now. Place the order immediately. Then wait. Wait. When it arrives,watch it. You're so very welcome.
Published 7 months ago by thatdudescott
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and Unique!
Stage Fright (aka Stage Fright Aquarius) is an interesting piece of slasher fare. A group of thespians are rehearsing for opening night of a play. Read more
Published 7 months ago by GSD
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Slasher
You may have heard the story a few times over, but will we ever get tired of it? NO!

A good 80's slasher with interesting characters, some awesome kills and a very... Read more
Published 17 months ago by M. Bartel
2.0 out of 5 stars A copy/remake of Pete Walker's 1972 film "Flesh And Blood Show"
A big disappointment. I expected to see a giallo, but this is a boring, typical slasher, nothing new or original for a 1987 film. Soavi is advertised as the new Argento! WRONG. Read more
Published 17 months ago by BILL
If you feel in the mood for an Italian Horror Slasher movie from the 1980's, then this is one for you to watch. It has a very heavy 80's vibe and it is pretty darn cool. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Rock n' Roll
4.0 out of 5 stars Italian Horror
I love old Italian horror flicks & this film just keeps the scares & fun rolling along. They are so good at using blood & instruments to slaughter people. So cool.
Published 19 months ago by David W. Barsness
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