STAY ALIVE

MOVIE REVIEW
HOME FEO'S STORE REVIEWS INTERVIEWS FEO AMANTE THEATER SCIENCE MOMENT UNFAIR RACIAL CLICHÉ ALERT

Movie reviews

Story reviews

Comic book reviews

Music reviews

Support This Site
When You Buy My Books

E.C. McMullen Jr.
PERPETUAL
BULLET

Perpetual Bullet Paperback
"'Some People' ... may be the standout story in the book."
- John Grant, Infinityplus

E.C. McMullen Jr.
WILLOW BLUE

Willow Blue
"'Willow Blue' will burrow under your skin and stay there long after you've put the book down."
- Jeffrey Reddick, Creator of
FINAL DESTINATION

IN OTHER BOOKS
E.C. McMullen Jr.'s

short story
CEDO LOOKED LIKE PEOPLE
in the anthology
FEAR THE REAPER
Fear The Reaper
"This Ray Bradbury-esque is one of the most memorable and one of the more original stories I've read in a long time."
- Amazon Review

HORROR 201:
The Silver Scream

Horror 201: The Silver Scream
Filmmaker's Guidebook
featuring
RAY BRADBURY,
JOHN CARPENTER,
WES CRAVEN,
TOM HOLLAND,
E.C. McMULLEN Jr.,
GEORGE A. ROMERO,
and many more.

Also
IN CINEMA
E.C. McMullen Jr.

Head Production Designer
Mine Games
MINE GAMES
(Starring:
JOSEPH CROSS, BRIANA EVIGAN,
ALEX MERAZ)

Dept. head
Special Effects Make-Up
(SFX MUA)
A Sierra Nevada Gunfight
A SIERRA NEVADA
GUNFIGHT

(MICHAEL MADSEN & JOHN SAVAGE).

Production Designer
Universal Dead
UNIVERSAL DEAD

(DOUG JONES,
D.B. SWEENEY,
GARY GRAHAM)

Art Director
The Crusader THE CRUSADER

(COLIN CUNNINGHAM,
GARY GRAHAM)
Movies Eddie McMullen Jr. Review by
E.C. McMullen Jr.
Stay Alive
SHOULD YOU?
TIP JAR
STAY ALIVE - 2006
USA Release: March 24, 2006
Hollywood Pictures
USA: Rated PG-13

You know I hate to see it. So many movies start off with such promise only to lose it somewhere and never recover: Or worse, get worse!

In my opinion, STAY ALIVE only exists as a parasite to the upcoming SILENT HILL. Granted it was written several years ago, but nobody gave a damn until SILENT HILL was in production. Only where SILENT HILL is a movie based on a very popular video game, STAY ALIVE is a movie based on a video game that doesn't exist. Meet the new paradigm.

The movie starts out decent enough with an obvious video game opening. Some guy is on a computer, playing a game, and his avatar meets a creepy and untimely end. The CGI, which is supposed to look like a computer game, is quite well done. But the death creeps out the player and he has to get up and walk around for a bit. He barges in on his roommates who, having PG-13 sex, yell at him to get out. He mentions something to the effect that he saw them die in the game too. Then he calls his pal, Hutch MacNeil (John Foster: TERMINATOR 3: RISE OF THE MACHINES) and tells him how scary the game is.

Eerie Merry Mishaps occur.

The next thing Hutch knows, his buddy Loomis Crowley (Milo Ventimiglia: CURSED) and the roommates are all dead. While he's attending the funeral, a strange girl walks up and takes a photo of him. Her name is Abigail (Samair Armstrong: DARK WOLF) and her connection to the grieving family is tenuous at best. Then another non-descript girl, the sister of the dead guy, gives Hutch his last belongings, which include a copy of the game he was playing prior to his death.

Soon Hutch and his group, some of which are friends and some of which are acquaintances, are playing the game. One guy, Miller Banks (Adam Goldberg: THE PROPHECY, THE SALTON SEA, FRANKENSTEIN [2004]) dies in the game. Soon after, he dies for real in the very same way he died in the game. In this game, you really DO have to Stay Alive! Needless to say, this sets Hutch on edge. Morale doesn't improve when the cops come sniffing around and make note of the fact that Hutch made a phone call to the latest victim just like he made a phone call to his recently buried pal.

I can't fault the special effects, which actually make great use of CGI in that it is actually supposed to look like CGI (Courtesy of Duane Floch and the Pixel Liberation Front: THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, SKY CAPTAIN, FLIGHT PLAN).

It's worse than theatrical quality in fact, because its supposed to be a computer game. But this works well in the spooky factor when these video demons start invading reality. The game actually looks like fun. While the movie goes into loads of detail concerning the game being based on the actual historical person of Countess Erzebet Bathory (with real Hollywood history!), its way too vague on why Lizzie showed up now and chose, of all things, a video game to return to life through: Other than the fact that the latest Horror movie spirits had already cornered the market on video tape (THE RING), the Internet (FEAR DOT COM), and broadcast transmissions (WHITE NOISE). Look for hellish demons to possess your iPod next*.

Erzebet Bathory

STAY ALIVE is, unfortunately, filled with a typical Teen Movie cast straight out of the film, Not Another Teen Movie. You would have thought they knew they were being so trite. First time Screenwriter Matthew Peterman and co-writer/Director William Brent Bell (BUCKET OF BLOOD), aimed low and missed their target anyway. The scene that throws the entire movie into the garbage, from which the audience booed and never recovered, was of one of the characters, after surviving a car accident, getting on his cell phone while standing in the middle of a road.

He talks, and talks, and talks, and this scene takes way too long, while he continues to chew up his anytime minutes, yapping on the damn cell phone, just dicking around, while Standing In The Middle of A Freaking ROAD! To absolutely nobody's surprise, a vehicle with a driver that had to see him from a mile away, finally comes and puts the son of a bitch out of his misery. This scene was unbelievably long and would have benefited greatly if the guy just staggered out of his car, into the road, while still believably disoriented, and got smacked. Oh well.

After that, the film cannot recover as the remaining characters of Swink Sylvania (Frankie Muniz) and October Bantum (Sophia Bush) join Hutch and Abigail to try and figure out how the hell old Erzebet Bathory is pulling all of this off.

STAY ALIVE is certainly not as bad as a Uwe Boll movie, but that's not saying a whole lot, is it?

Two Shriek Girls.

*
And it happened: THE SIGNAL.

Shriek GirlsShriek Girls
This review copyright 2006 E.C.McMullen Jr.

Stay Alive (2006) on IMDb
CHANGE YOUR SHIRT

Return to Movies

FEO AMANTE'S HORROR THRILLER
Created by:
E.C.MULLEN JR.
COME FOLLOW ME @
Amazon
ECMJr
Facebook
Feo Blog
IMDb
Instagram
Stage32
Twitter
YouTube
Zazzle Shop
I will take you home...Feo Amante's Horror Home Page, Feo Amante's Horror Thriller, and feoamante.com are owned and
Copyright © 1997 - 2019 by E.C .McMullen Jr.
FAIR USE - PRIVACY POLICY - OWNERSHIP - CONTACT
All images and text belong to E.C. McMullen Jr. unless otherwise noted.
All fiction stories belong to their individual authors.