Starry Eyes – Breaking into Hollywood… Faust style
Sarah, an aspiring actress is sick of her situation. She seems to be getting nowhere in Hollywood, and hangs out with a bunch of people who are all doing the same. She works a day job at a Hootersesque restaurant, and suffers an internal tug of war between her magnetic optimism and her crippling insecurities. Until, one day, she gets her chance for a big break! She begins the auditioning process, but slowly starts to realize that what it takes to make it in show biz might be to much (or to evil) for her to handle.
The story here is a familiar one, but with a fun, new, supernatural twist that keeps things devilishly fun. The script from Kolsch and Widmyer is effective, but it is Essoe who takes the film to another level. Her transition from bubbly and hopeful actress to be into something far far more nefarious is beautifully acted. Her home run of a performance is aided by a good supporting cast who all give solid performances themselves. Especially Amanda Fuller and Fabianne Therese who offset each other well, and add a bit of sweet and salty to the film.
The cinematography and score should not be overlooked either. The colors and synth add much to the vibe of things going from curious, to bad, to holy hell! Everyone that worked on this film showed up to play and delivered on all levels. A great addition to the body horror genre that would make Cronenberg proud.
I keep going back to Alex Essoe though. I was so impressed with her effort here, and I can safely say that she is a star in the making. I kept feeling like I was watching the emergence of the next scream queen. She, ladies and gentlemen, is one to keep an eye on.