PLOT: A struggling actress is offered a life-changing role, but what she has to do to keep it can prove deadly.
I think, for the most part, I take for granted being born a man. It just so happened that I turned on this movie – a movie centered on the predatory instincts of powerful people, men specifically – just after the whole news about Donald Trump’s thoughts on the etiquette of grabbing women by their crotches. Starry Eyes may be a horror movie, but unfortunately, it’s probably not all that far from a reality.
The film centers on Sarah, a struggling actress trying desperately to make it in Hollywood while she works at a Hooters style restaurant to pay the bills. After she goes on a bizarre audition for a small but influential production company, the producer propositions her: all the fame and fortune she could ask for and all she needs to do is surrender to his desires.
The film raises an interesting moral conundrum: what are you willing to do in order to have all your dreams realized? Is it worth giving up your friends and your current life? Is it worth giving some creepy old dude a blowjob? Fortunately, I’ve never had to ask myself that last question, but I’m sure plenty of people have been faced with it in the past.
There’s not much gore for most of the runtime, but towards the last act, there’s a whole bunch of it. A few people are stabbed and one girl gets her head brutally smashed in by a dumbbell. It gets pretty gruesome and it goes to a level you wouldn’t think.
Gore Rating: 4 out of 5
This is more a psychological horror film than anything else, but it’s kind of creepy to see the dark side of an industry built with an unbalanced power dichotomy. There are plenty of stories about the seamy underbelly of Hollywood, and this movie throws some occult themes in there with them. It’s also unnerving to see the breakdown of the main character, both physically and mentally.
Scare Rating: 2.5 out of 5
This is probably the most fateful blowjob in movies I’ve seen in a while. Apparently, that’s how cults take souls in this movie, directly through the penis. There’s also some post-transition nudity from the main character at the end. She looks pretty good, bald head and all.
Sex/Nudity Rating: 3.5 out of 5
This is a decently creepy movie, with a very strong performance from lead actress Alex Essoe. It’s a story of a descent into madness, sort of like Black Swan, but with creepy cult stuff perpetrated by the Hollywood elite. I would have liked to see more interaction between the main character and the actual cult, though. There’s more between her and her shitty group of friends, but you never really get a sense of how powerful this cult really is or what exactly they’re offering. We don’t even get to see her shoot any scene in this supposed movie she’s been cast in, which would have been nice. Otherwise, there’s a bit of a David Lynch feel to this movie, most notably Mulholland Dr. and Inland Empire, which I appreciate.