Stage Fright

Stage Fright

stage fright still

This week, we pay tribute to the incomparable musician and actor, Meat Loaf, who passed away this month by visiting….nope, not that one. We skipped over the more obvious Rocky Horror Picture Show for the less obvious but promising Stage Fright. This brutal 2014 horror-comedy-musical – only the second horror-comedy-musical we’ve reviewed on this show – didn’t quite float our boats, but it gave us a perfect vehicle for revisiting the career of this unparalleled talent.

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Stage Fright (2014)

Episode 290, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd. 

Craig: And I’m Craig. 

Todd: Craig, not far on the heels of Betty White’s death, we learned of the death of one of my all-time favorite musicians, Meat Loaf. Meat Loaf is his name. Most people, I think know Meat Loaf…God, where do I start? I didn’t, I didn’t know about Meat :oaf, uh, until I was in high school, actually, I had a good friend who I met at music camp.

I went to, uh, I think I was a, it was between my freshman and sophomore year. I went to a band camp at a local university and my roommate, uh, was a big fan of a lot of different styles. And so we had a lot of fun going back and forth and talking about our favorite musicians. And one thing that he says, oh, meatloaf.

And I said, what are you talking about? And he says, oh God, there’s a new album out now Bat Out of Hell 2. of you heard it. And I had seen the posters and I’ve been curious about. And of course the song, uh, I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that was playing nonstop on the radio at that time.

And I put all these three things together and said, oh, he did that song. And he says, you got to listen to this album. It’s amazing. I went out and bought the album on his recommendation as soon as I got back from band camp and was blown away. The style of music on there was just unlike. I mean, of course, you know, as you grow up and you listen to pop music, you hear some of these older songs.

And so, you know, I guess I’d heard some of these songs before, but I never really heard so much of it. And w w and said, gosh, this, this is a style. This is a very big bombastic operatic rock. And it really spoke to me. I just love the boldness and the audacity of in the, over the top aspect to the music. It just, it just sung.

And I loved it. And I went and found his earlier album, since that was part two, I went back to find part, one, found out the Paradise By the Dashboard Light came from that. So I got to listening that, and I just went through pretty much a whole year, probably of discovering meatloaf and his songwriter, buddy, Jim Steinman, who wrote most of his songs and wrote lots of similar style songs for other musicians as well.

Many of which were big top hits turn around bright eyes. He wrote. Oh God. Yes. yep, yep. Yep. Original sin for dailer Dane, Jim Steinman, his songwriting buddy wrote this and, you know, meatloaf and Jim were almost inseparable really from a, from a creative standpoint. Jim wrote most of his most popular songs, Jim diamond and meatloaf Matt, while, while meatloaf was, um, involved in, in musical theater, meatloaf was, uh, he, you know, his name really is like Meat Loaf.

He was born Marvin Lee ad day. However, even when he was a baby, apparently he came out bright red and his father convinced the nurses to write meatloaf or meat or something on his, the tag on his bed. Marvin Lee . He just kind of became even as a kid called Meat Loaf and he was bigger. He weighed like over 200 pounds, quite young.

He was made fun of a lot for his weight. And I think the weight is something he always struggled with throughout his. But, you know, bigger guys like this, uh, tend to also be able to belt out bigger voices. And I think that that ended up kind of perhaps some of his physicality really turned out, working in his favor in doing these very operatic type songs that he ended up getting well known for and really excelling at.

I believe when Jim Steinman was working on a play called more than you deserve Meat Loaf was in a touring company for hair. And, uh, that’s how he sort of discovered him and that he, he got pretty big, uh, after doing hair. He also had a band on his own on the side, but when the two of those guys got together, they started working on bat out of hell, almost at the same time.

And when they released that album, it just, it was a popular success and much like these popular albums that just go down in history. The critics hated it. Critics said it was too over the top. It’s too cheesy. It’s too goofy. But nevertheless, it really resonated with the public and became a signature style for him.

Jim’s diamond wrote the songs. Meat Loaf did the thing meatloaf went on around this very same time to be in Rocky horror picture show, which I guess we could have easily done for this podcast as well. We chose to go with a movie little more recently, 2000 fourteens stage fright, which is a horror musical.

And this was recommended to us by a couple of people. I believe, of course, when we heard meatloaf died, we instantly went to see if he was in a, in a horror movie besides Rocky Horror. And this came up and I’ll have to say that after reading the little quick synopsis on IMD B, I was like, Craig, we got to do this because it just sounds hilarious.

A snobby musical theater camp is terrorized by a bloodthirsty killer who hates musical theater.

It just, it sounds so delicious. And Craig and I are both fans of musical. Craig and I have worked together and musical theater productions. And so I just knew this would be the perfect one for us to do. He’s got a pretty big part and it’s directed by a guy named Jerome Sable who wrote and directed it.

And this is almost pretty much the only thing he’s done. He’s done. Uh, he did a short before this and I think he might be working on something now, but, uh, yeah, it’s an interesting project. I’d never heard of this before at all. Uh, certainly had never been on my radar. How about you, Craig? Uh, 

Craig: I had heard of it and I had seen the poster and I knew that Meat Loaf was in it.

And I knew that it was a musical. I, I don’t know why I never got around to watching it cause I hadn’t seen it before we decided to do it. And another reason that I’m surprised I haven’t seen it is because I really am a meatloaf fan. Like, um, bat outta hell was a huge, enormous part of the soundtrack of my childhood.

Parents, my aunts and uncles loved it. I mean, it was playing all the time greeting about the guy today. I was surprised that that was so, so successful. And then he pretty much went largely ignored in the United States, like throughout all of the eighties, like he was still releasing albums, but they weren’t charting in the states.

They were doing well in Europe and in Asia, but, uh, not here. And he even had a huge hit, I think in Europe, a duet was share that didn’t even get airtime in the United States, which I don’t really understand. Those are two iconic performers. I don’t know how. Went ignored, but his big comeback with bat outta hell too.

I think when we were in high school, I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that. And I remember that the song was great. The music video was cinematic. It was like this huge beauty and the beast saying like, oh man, it was really good. And it was really cool. You know, the guy had some, I don’t know if you want to call them political.

It’s not necessarily political, but he had some stances that I don’t necessarily agree with. He, he was a climate denier and. Had kind of an anti-vax stance or whatever. These are things I’m not thrilled about, but whatever you can’t deny that he just had an amazing talent. Um, and I can attest to that because when I was in college, we used to do karaoke all the time.

Local bars did karaoke and we were there, you know, at least once a week through most of college and girls would always ask me to say, Paradise by the dashboard light with them. And I love that song and, uh, I would get up on stage with these girls and I would start singing and I’d get about halfway through it.

And I’d be like, every time, like every time I’d be like, oh my God, I forgot. This is a fucking hard song.

You get into the last part. And I’m just screaming 

Todd: my head off most of his tunes, really, if you’re gonna, oh gosh, you gotta have a range. 

Craig: Yeah. He has a huge, amazing range and a huge top range. you’d look at this guy and you’d think he’s probably a bass. He’s this big masculine guy. And he had this amazing tenor.

Um, that’s, that’s difficult to replicate and, uh, you know, even in Rocky horror, his song, hot patootie that’s that that song is high. And he nailed it and he’s great in that movie and you’re right. We could have done that movie. It just seemed too obvious, 

Todd: too obvious for us. And, you know, I think of him almost like an opera singer.

I think his music was very operatic. Uh, Jim Steinman described it as Wagnerian rock. That was kind of what he was going for. And he also had a very theatrical approach to the music itself. It is bombastic, it’s operatic, it’s big, it’s, it’s loud and it, but it’s, it’s also, uh, you know, goes in different places, a highly emotional and clever even in the lyrics.

But, um, just like yous mentioned this, this epic music video, which is like beauty and the beast and the song also what lasts like 10 minutes or so for all, you know, anything you can do for love. I won’t do that. Uh, I was reading. An interview with the director writer, director, and producer of this film, stagefright, who talked about meeting meet for the first time.

And he said that you would think that, you know, we, he said there was a piano in there. We had some brought some songs, you know, and all that. And we did end up going through a little bit, but he said, you would think that we just sat down in there and planned out, okay, well, we’re going to play this and we’re going to sing this and you’re going to sing that.

But no, he said first and foremost, he was interested in the. He wanted to know who is this guy? What’s, uh, what’s the emotional aspect of it. And it just makes sense because, uh, he said, you know, this is how he approached his music was very theatrically. Um, what is the emotional content behind the songs?

And, and, you know, not, can I hit the notes, but what do I need to do to bring that, that power to it? And it, it shows, I think this was part of the critics problem. They said, this is too much. It’s like music, the musical theater of the rock world. You know, we’re all just going to kind of chuckle at it and laugh at it and put our noses up at it.

But you guys are being, are being totally cheesy, but we love. 

Craig: But it resonated with the public. I mean, I don’t know anybody who doesn’t like those songs, they’re just really good. And, and he was a fine actor too. I mean, he didn’t have an expansive acting career, but he was in quite a few movies and, um, some, some memorable stuff.

Uh, one of the ones that stands out for me was his role in fight club. Oh yeah. I forgot about that. He played this, um, older heavyset man. Like the gag was kind of that he had these big man boobs, but you know, he played kind of this sad sack, but then through fight club, he found his confidence and, and all that stuff and small role, but he did a good job in it.

And I do, I think that he was a theatrical person, like you said, he started out in musical theater. I thought it was funny. I just read today that he, he did hair and then. He was working on some other production when he was scouted for the role in, uh, Rocky horror. And, uh, he went and he was doing all of the rehearsals, but the, he didn’t know.

How sexual it was in nature until Tim Curry arrived, uh, onset in full costume and, and did sweet transvestite. And when he saw that he wanted to pull out, he wanted to drop out of the production. He thought it was too scandalous or something. I don’t know, but the director talked to me and I think we’re talking about the show.

I don’t think we’re talking about the movie at this point. Yeah, he did the show first. Right. But, uh, the, the director convinced them. He said, just wait. And until opening night, just, just do opening night and let’s see what happens. And the crowd just went absolutely wild and, and seeing their reaction convinced him to stay.

And then of course he reprised the role in the film and that that movie is iconic in its own. Right. But this movie, you know, I don’t know what to say about this movie. We joked, uh, when, when we were talking about doing it, that this will only be the second horror musical comedy that we’ve ever done. Uh, the first one, the first one being Anna in the, in the apocalypse, which both of us really enjoyed.

I didn’t know what to, I had no idea. I had never seen a trailer. I knew nothing about this. I didn’t know what the tone was going to be. And then I started watching it. And, and it’s also funny because Minnie driver is in this movie and she’s given top billing and she’s in like the first. Five minutes.

Todd: It’s like a fake out, like at the beginning of scream 

Craig: with drew Barrymore moment. 

Todd: Right. I was a little disappointed by that. I was really hoping to see a lot of mini driver in this cause I seen her. I was too, but I. No 

Craig: she’s and she’s brilliantly talented as well. Uh, it opened up, I mean, I kinda knew right from the beginning that we were getting into something, we were getting into something when there was a, a scroll at the beginning.

Um, the following film is based on true events out of respect for the family and friends of the victims names have been changed, but the musical numbers will be performed exactly as they occurred.

And I thought that was pretty hilarious. And it starts on what looks like a stage or kind of backstage. And there’s this guy in a tux and there’s this masked killer, like in the shadows and he stabs the guy, but then it turns out that this is all at theatrical production. It’s an opera and Kiley Swanson played by Minnie driver is the ingenue.

And she’s starring and she sings this big aria and her two young children are watching from the wings with meatloaf. His characters name is Roger McCall, and he is the producer of the show, I think. But I think it’s also suggested that he’s also Kylie’s boyfriend 

Todd: or 

Craig: husband or something, but anyway, after the show, it’s a huge success, you know, uh, the audio.

Loves it. And she kind of talks to her kids after a little bit. She, she autographs a photograph for her daughter and she writes some cheesy thing on it. I don’t know, like all life’s a song, so saying or something. I don’t know. The girl sings that line several times, but then the, the daughter Camilla wanders out on stage and is kind of singing on her own, but she sees a massive figure in the balcony and then it cuts to black and we go back into Kylie’s dressing room and that mast figure comes up behind her.

And she’s talking to him as though she thinks it is a lover and she’s like, oh no, we can’t do this here. But he’s like caressing her. And then he stabs her in the throat and in the mouth. And it’s brutal. It’s horrible. The violence and gore in this movie, this ends up being a cheesy movie. The violence and gore in this movie are intense and definitely qualify.

As a horror movie. 

Todd: Yeah. It’s a real interesting tonal choice. I read that many driver when she was doing ADR for this, which is, you know, just kind of dubbing, uh, for that particular scene. And they were doing extra sounds. She couldn’t watch it because it was so violent, even though she did, she did the stunt work there, like she was wearing the appliances and all that.

She couldn’t actually watch it because it was so it was so. It 

Craig: is very violent, very bloody. And to see somebody stabbed in the throat and through the mouth with a giant kitchen knife, very visceral and upsetting the thing. I didn’t know this until after I’d watched the movie. Cause I didn’t read anything about it beforehand because I didn’t want anything to be spoiled, but something that I was really impressed by this is a full blown musical was lots of singing and many drivers sings this aria in the beginning.

That’s very high. It’s very operatic. And I read the, the performers all did all of their singing live. It’s crazy. That is crazy. Like that’s, that’s virtually unheard of. You always record the singing and then lip sync the production, you know, the, the filming. I mean, that’s pretty standard for all of them to have been singing, live that in and of itself is impressive.

And I don’t know, I was asking myself, did I know that many drivers saying, I don’t know if I did or not like somewhere in the back of my head. Like, I feel like I knew that, but it was impressive. She’s gorgeous. She had a lovely voice she’s killed off right there in the beginning. 

Todd: She was in the, um, she was in the film version of Phantom of the opera.

Craig: That’s right. She played car lotta. Correct. Who was, um, like the main diva that the main girl ends up replacing the one that the Phantom wants to perform the diva role? Uh, correct. 

Todd: Correct. And this, this musical, that sheet within the movie that she’s singing is called the haunting. Of the, of the opera or the haunting of the theater, right.

Craig: Something like that, haunting of the opera. Right. And it’s very clearly prepared it. Yeah, it is Phantom of the opera basically. Um, they just don’t use Lloyd Webber’s, you know, they, they, they wrote their own, their own version of it, but that’s very much what it is. They write 

Todd: it similar. Like it’s clearly nodding to it, like similar style, some similar chord patterns.

It’s kind of cute actually, how they’re trying to mimic it a little bit. 

Craig: It is cute. After that, after the, the brutal murder, a teenage Camilla played by an actress named Allie McDonald’s who had. No, and hasn’t been in a ton of stuff, but she looks so much like Dakota Johnson. That was just distracting to me the whole time she, she wakes up in a sweat, like she has dreams, you know, these events are like they’re haunting her or whatever.

And we see that it’s 10 years later and then it cuts to a bus full of kids going to the center stage theater camp and they sing a huge. Production number. And I don’t even know what to say about it. It’s all about like where we’re on our way to where we belong. And it’s all about how, you know, they’re in their regular lives, their outcasts, but at theater camp, they can be themselves.

a slew of other mode. It’s an E as cheesy as that is. It’s totally true. Like these, these specialized camps, I always go, I didn’t go to a musical theater camp. I went to like, uh, it, it was like a school camp. Like you went and like took classes. Like I took like science classes. 

Todd: Oh my God, Craig, how boring? 

Craig: I, you know, so when I tell people about it, I, I always say, you know, in seventh grade, when I went to nerd camp, But that’s, that’s what it was, but it was just a bunch of nerds and we had a great time, 

Todd: of course, but this song wedgies, 

Craig: right.

But this song. So cheesy and so silly. And there’s one point where this guy, character sings this big chorus about, oh, I’m good. Hey, I’m gay. But not in that way. Music has moved me and touched me in a ways I can, sir,

hi, sleep with make me look here. It goes on for a while. Like just even that I’m gay part. And like all the kids are all singing. Like we’re all gay and different ways. So, oh. It was like up until that point, I’m like, oh my gosh, this is really cheesy. I don’t know. And then when it hit that part, I’m like, okay, like they are clearly going for the cheesy.

And so if I. I’m just going to go ahead and get on board with it and enjoy it for what it is. And ultimately I did, it’s really silly. And I have to say I was talking last night about it to my partner last night. And I just said, you know, my, my biggest complaint about the movie, I, I don’t mind at all, but it’s a musical.

I really enjoy. I just didn’t really find the songs, all that. Good. I agreed. You know, when we did, when we did Anna and the apocalypse, there’s some really 

Todd: good songs 

Craig: right after we were done, I downloaded that soundtrack. Like I listened to it, like there’s really, really catching numbers in that movie.

These are more like book numbers. They’re not really like breakaway pop hits. 

Todd: I felt like the staging was not very inspired most of the time either. You know, I don’t know. It was fun, 

Craig: you know, in this big one, this big number. And especially since it’s a lot of kids, kids. Yeah. And, and, you know, different types of kids, older kids, younger kids, and, and, you know, Now that I’m thinking about it.

I was going to say all types of kids, but I don’t really remember any brown kids. 

Todd: No, not really. There were a couple Asian kids in very white production. Very white. Yeah. 

Craig: This, uh, it’s, it’s a Canadian production, but you know, just, it, it, it did. It made me think of, you know, I was a theater kid and it was very much a community in a safe space.

And so I related to that and it’s cute. Um, but Camilla and buddy are grown up now, the buddy is the son. They’re twins. They work in the kitchen. They’re the same age as these theater kids, but they don’t attend the camp. They work at it because apparently, oh God, I’m just going to call him meatloaf.

Meatloaf runs the camp. And I guess that since their mother was killed, he’s been raising them. You 

Todd: can guess. I really think maybe he was married to her, but, but they’re not his kids because they make a point of saying, remember, he’s not our dad. 

Craig: Yeah. She asks him what this year’s show is going to be. And he kind of brushes it off and just says, it’s going to be a knockout, Broadway agents, Broadway Scouts.

We’re going to be back in New York before you know it. What is it?

Your mother, God bless her. We’ll be proud. RD is going to be the director, I guess already is like a senior camper or something. He’s played by a guy named Brandon, a wits. Um, he he’s, he’s stereotypical kind of full of himself, skeevy. Theater director, very skeevy, but they announced that the show that they’re going to be doing is the haunting of the opera.

It’s the, it’ll be, it will premiere on the 10 year anniversary of its world premiere, which is when their mother died, but already is like, this is a show about concealing yourself. And so I’m going to make this, I don’t remember. It’s so cheesy. Like I’m going to conceal the show. So one of my favorite lines is like, it’s about covering, covering up who you really are and isn’t that the scariest thing of all.

That’s why I’m going to reinvent this entire production and cover it with a postmodern face. Now who can tell me what Japanese tradition involves covering your face all in white bouquet.

It’s somebody else’s like Kabuki. So they’re going to do this show, but they’re going to do it in Kabuki, which is also hilarious because they couldn’t be more white 

Todd: nights. And th the final production, couldn’t be more like, it’s just ridiculously Oriental, like, um, appropriation, I guess you can say, like, yeah.

Craig: I mean the main, like the makeup looks good, but you’re looking at it. Like you shouldn’t be doing no

Todd: big this book, big pagoda on this stage and this font across it. That’s that old, like 1950 style Oriental font, you know? I mean, it’s just bad, but I guess that’s part of the joke. 

Craig: Yeah. I guess. But Camilla, Camilla, everybody calls her cam. So I’m going to start calling her cam cam decides that she wants to audition.

Meanwhile, we see that apparently the killer or a killer. Is there at the camp. He’s like living behind the walls. He has like this layer with all of the kids head shots on the wall, and he’s just angry all the time. And he’s like bitching, he’s a rocker killer. Like everybody else’s musical theater. And he’s like,

Todd: I think big, the first thing he says, shut your mouth.

what’s your knife and his blades across the wall. Like he’s crazy. I was like, it’s it’s this guy lived there all year long. 

Craig: And has he been there for the last 10 years? What’s going on? What is happening? Uh, so cam goes to the audition, but she’s not really allowed because she doesn’t really go to the camp.

She just works there. So the boy who’s like letting people into the auditions, his name is Joel, and he obviously has a crush on her and she convinces him to let her audition. And she’s like, I’ll owe you a favor later Blitzer. And, and he watches her from the flies, like from the catwalk and, and we get like his point of view, which is kind of leering and very much like the killer’s point of view.

So right away, he’s on your list of suspects 

Todd: and also every now and then the creepy gardener, right? Stereotypical, creepy gardener, 

Craig: the creepy Gardner, or like maintenance guy or whatever, who, there are tons of slasher, film references, references. And, and this guy is Freddy Krueger. I mean, there’s, there’s one point where he’s sweeping the stage with, you know, a big broom and like looking to the side, it looks exactly like, uh, Robert England or even west Craven.

You know, as, as Freddy Krueger is sweeping, um, and his name is Higgins. That’s my name too.

And so she does audition and she gets the part she’s double cast with this girl named Liz, who is like the theater ingenue, who everybody expected to get the part after she gets the part, she comes back to her locker in the kitchen, and somebody is vandalized to the picture of her mom, which makes her sad.

And, oh man, I don’t know. You know, we find out that the camp is going into foreclosure, like meatloaf is dealing with that. We see several scenes of him trying to get a Broadway producer on the phone. Like he apparently he has this connection to this guy from back in the day, but he’s having a really hard time getting.

A hold of him. He just keeps getting brushed off. Even though he’s already told all the campers, this guy is coming, he’s a Broadway producer. He’s going to be here to scout. And, uh, yeah. So then we just jump into the making of the play. And already the skeevy director immediately puts the move on cam and she rebuffs, but it becomes this cat and mouse thing where she keeps asking him who is going to get to play the role.

Since it’s double cast, who’s going to get to play the role on opening night because that’s the night that the Broadway guy is going to be there. And it’s obvious that the ultimatum is. It can be you, but you’re going to have to me and like, that’s that it plays out for a long time. It’s really gross. It is disgusting.

And I feel like she flirts with him and she kisses him, hoping that’ll be enough that it will be enough. And it never is. And there’s, there’s one point where I thought that she was going to do it. And I was like, this is gross. Like let’s not even make this happen in this movie. It’s gross. But at the last minute, you know, after she’s already taken her top off and he’s on top or at the last minute, she, she doesn’t do it.

But, uh, there’s, there’s, I don’t know, a good 15, 20 minutes where we just see. The, the rehearsal process preparation for the show. Yeah. The rehearsal built know building the set, making the costumes, testing the makeup or her saying. And I don’t know. I mean, if you’re a theater kid, as I am, as you are, and it was fun, but not a whole whole lot 

Todd: happens kind of foreshadow a bunch of stuff.

There’s the ghost light on the stage, which is the sort of traditional, um, little, Lamplugh just a little light bulb on a stand that, uh, you’re supposed to leave on at all times to chase the ghosts of the theater away or whatever. They’ve got that out there. There’s a kid with a Skilsaw, which I noticed they had modified.

The logo on Skilsaw, they took the S off. It just said kill saw. She noticed 

Craig: no, but was he the kid? Was it like, uh, like a circular saw and he like rears it up like leather face. That was hilarious. There’s there’s also the, the, um, costume girl, her pin cushion is a wig form, so it looks like pin head. It’s so cool.

I liked that. I liked those little throwbacks. Yep. 

Todd: I think the, the deaths start happening, um, about the time the Camry buffs already, uh, that last month. Uh, and so already kind of wanders out and, uh, uh, he’s kind of out on the stage and darkness and he hears a noise or something. I don’t know. It goes out to, to investigate and he’s by that light.

And then, uh, the. Suddenly looks up and these lights, staged lights start falling on him. That is a real danger. This, no, I was just 

Craig: gonna say the same thing. Like I think that casual viewers wouldn’t know how scary that is. Those things will kill you. Yeah. 

Todd: Yeah. Nike is hell and they’re hanging above you all the time, just clamped on there.

And uh, and they, they start falling down on him and he’s kind of dodging them, but one of them catches us. In a very highly unprobable way. Somehow it pins him to the 

Craig: stage. Yeah. One of the clamps like goes all the way through his foot, like through his shoe, through his foot and like Pensam, which I don’t think that would probably have it, th those clamps aren’t sharp.


Todd: When you can just tell whatever the way it was like, yeah. It’s not going to happen anyway. He’s trying to get it off because he, the killer in the mask and the robot, just like from the show, the Kabuki mask is coming towards him. And he’s very, I don’t know what you say, like Freddy Kruger in his way.

Like he talks to these guys and he taunts them as he’s, he’s got witty catchphrase, as he says, as he’s coming at them. And, uh, the kid can’t ever get it off, but the killer just goes over to him and he starts pushing him backwards, which makes his foot basically snap in half

Also in probably, but whatever it tears his foot off, but then he kind of swing something around and whacks the killer. And you sorta think he’s knocked out. He crawls towards this big box. That’s marked swords that we see on the stage. There’s even a little Glint, like an animated thing. Glinted comes off of it.

Like this is his precious treasure and he runs over and opens the box, but he doesn’t do it until. Uh, and he swings around and, uh, the killer grabs him and also improbably, but whatever, just basically pries, open his mouth and puts it over the light bulb on that stand and turns the ball bond, which I guess in some way, sort of fries him.

Craig: Yeah. Electrocutes him. And then the killer screams like a rockstar and cam wakes up in the sweat again, which we have seen before. I do want to take a second, you know, in the original production, it just looks very much like Phantom of the opera and the, the Phantom or ghost or whatever you want to call him was just wearing a white mask for their Kabuki production.

They’ve altered the mask and, and, you know, made it like a Kabuki mask, but it looks really good. And the 

Todd: jaw moves. 

Craig: It’s pretty, it’s pretty menacing. Um, I thought, you know, for a masked killer, it looks pretty good. I mean, the movies, not the movies, not particularly scary, you know, what’s going to happen. You know, people are going to get picked off and it is a mystery.

Like, I didn’t know who the killer was. Like, I couldn’t figure it out. I’m like, who could it possibly be? Like, I, it’s funny that you say that because I went back and I read reviews by the way, this movie does not, is not reviewed well, that reviews, uh, range from like mildly warm to very cold. Um, But in the reviews, I was like, oh, you can see who the killer is a mile away.

I have no idea. I was surprised. 

Todd: I thought it was just really a, quite an easy process of elimination, like motivation. And who would, you know, it’s not going to be well, you know, it’s not gonna be the creepy kid. Who’s been leering on her. No, it’s not going to be the gardener. You know, these two folks are obvious, like who’s left, who would want to run around and kill people.

Who’s not getting killed. And I thought, well, I could only think of one person. Um, it sort of turned out to be, 

Craig: but in hindsight, that makes perfect sense. It just never occurred to me and really looking back and I’m like, well, you’re an idiot. You should’ve been able to figure that out, but I didn’t. 

Todd: That’s how it’s supposed to be.

Right. Yeah. If you look back and said all that’s BS, then they didn’t do a good job. The 

Craig: camp is all abuzz the next morning. And Joel, who’s crushing on cam asks her if she thinks it’s connected to her mom. Um, but at the same time, Roger meatloaf finally gets a call back from this producer who agrees to come.

So he wants to keep everything. Quiet. He doesn’t even want to report the death because it’s opening night. 

Todd: Well, I was just going to say, maybe you’re going to say this, but like he runs out and does a whole musical number where he has to confess, convince all of the entire camp. Just hold off on another day, because I just got, 

Craig: I just got the Meatloaf’s big number, right?

this girl who can’t be more than like seven is in the crowd, like the crowd parts. And she’s like, isn’t it wrong to sing and dance when someone just died?

And then meatloaf sings a very inspirational song about theater, like getting them through the hard times and like, no matter how bad a day you’ve had, when you come out of that musical performance, you feel okay. And he gets them all, you know, excited, but buddy Cam’s brother, he wants her to quit. He’s like, this is dangerous.

You know, look what happened to mom, you and me let’s just leave. And, and she agrees, but she goes to tell meatloaf that she’s going to be leaving. And, uh, he kind of talks her into it. He’s like, you know, it’s, it’s just one night, your mother would want you to do it. Um, so she agrees to stay. She tells buddy, I will leave with you.

I just have to do this tonight. Um, Joel, the guy who was crushing on. Asks her not to do it. Um, but the show must go on and the audience begins to arrive 

Todd: and a metal guy gets his song. It’s not a long song, but he’s back in the shadows. I pretty sure the title of his song is shut your face, 

Craig: hear music.

Cause I said, 

Todd: shit, his songs and his bits when he comes in are very much like, uh, they’re basically like death metal, heavy metal, death metal kind of growling, you know, screaming, screaming type stuff very much in contrast to everything else, which is very, you know, musical theater, Sondheim, Andrew Lloyd Webber type material, 

Craig: electric guitar solos.

He reminded me of the killer from summer party masker too. Just in that way. Like, like I’m a, I’m a serious rocker, 

Todd: definitely more medicine than the guy. Yeah. 

Craig: Yeah. That’s true that you don’t see him very much until the end in the end. You he’s more. Well, 

Todd: that’s part of the that’s part of what makes the movie not really scary, right?

It’s it’s, there’s not a lot of stalking going on. It’s just sort of a, um, you know, plot, very plot driven. This, this person’s gonna die. As prince is gonna die. This person’s going to die. Like you said, you’re you see it coming, you know, it’s going to happen. Uh, but it’s brutal though, man. It’s 

Craig: brutal. Yeah.

And there, there are funny theater gags, like, you know, this one girl is giving cam all these tips on like warming up your voice. And they’re all of the stereotypical things that we theater people really do think people out people outside of the theater world, if they knew what was going on behind the scenes, they would probably be.

He’s scratching their heads. Like what? Yeah, we’re, we’re just weird. Um, but anyway, uh, so the show starts and, and there’s an acute moment where straight Sam who is playing the mass killer goes out and does his first, uh, number. And when he comes back, he’s like so pumped after his number that he kisses David, the stage manager.

And I was like, awe, young, gay love. That’s sweet. Um, Uh, I have in my mind, I’m just going through my notes. Uh, my, my next note is Cam’s costume is very titty. 

Todd: Yeah. They knew they really took the, um, Jim Wiener ski thing to heart. That breasts are the best special effects you can have cheapest breasts or the cheapest special effects you have.

Yeah. I thought she’s going to fall out of it. 

Craig: Who’s going to fall right out. Right. She doesn’t, she’s fine. Um, we see somebody pouring red paint in a bucket for some reason. Killed me. Like she picks up a paint bucket with a handle and pours it into a different bucket with a handle

to set it up, carry style, and like they do the killer POV thing. So you’re kind of, you kind of think it’s the killer, but I was like, why would the killer do that? Like the killer is just going to kill them. It’s not the killer. It’s Liz, the other girl, the other D right. And she sets it up, but then it doesn’t happen.

Um, and then. Oh, gosh, what happens? The, uh, lose gets 

Todd: killed, right? Or no, no, no, no. It doesn’t get killed. Pulled aside, Sam, 

Craig: Sam goes backstage, right? And he finds the costumer dead and her head is full of nails. Um, like somebody has killed her with a nail gun and the killer grabs him from the back. It is it screams.

Nailed it. And then stabs Sam to death, brutally. Everything is just absolutely brutally brutal God. Um, because he’s dead, Sam misses his next stage Q, which is supposed to be like the big. Finale aria. And so Kim like scoots her way off stage, and then I didn’t know what was happening, but somebody in the killer mask stumbles on stage and it’s just kind of stumbling around and I could, I could kind of tell that it seemed like they were bound.

Like that’s what, like, like their arms were bound and they were just kind of randomly stumbling around, but this just ends up ultimately being, you know, cam finds Sam and then gosh, what happens, David? The stage manager who has said that he’ll never go on stage because he has stage fright. He has to go on stage to try to cover, keep the show going.

There’s another murder. The warmup girl gets killed in the shower. Like she, like, it’s not a shower scene. She just turns on the shower to steam the room for her voice. And then I. It’s hot enough to kill her. 

Todd: Yes. Let me turn up. Let me warm you up is what he says. 

Craig: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And then cam finds her, um, gosh, the killer.

Oh, so then the killer gets Roger. He knocks Roger out and he ties him up and then he sings them and has a guitar solo and then cam shows up and confronts the killer. This is all in the kitchen. The killer is singing to Roger and is getting ready to kill him. But then cam shows up and confronts him and immediately takes off his mask.

And the killer is revealed. Yeah. And again, I was shocked. It’s buddy. It’s her brother. Now I didn’t want to spoil that earlier, even though that was just five minutes ago. I was surprised. And I think that the reason I was surprised now it should have been a tip off that buddy hadn’t been around very much like that.

They’re they’re twins and they work together and they were both there in the beginning scene. But once she gets involved with the musical, he pops in every once in a while, but not very much. And that should have been a clue. I think the other reason that I didn’t suspect him is because this boy, man young man is, is very handsome and like sweet looking like he’s got these baby blue eyes, curls and curls.

Yeah. And all, ultimately his story is kind of tragic. It’s sad. I mean, he’s a brutal killer, but. I felt bad for 

Todd: him. Yeah. I mean, I did too. I felt well anyway. Yeah, I did feel bad for him, but I also thought it, all of it was kind of unrealistic buddy tells, uh, CA cam, you know, he monologues basically, this is why I’m doing this.

Uh, and he says that Roger killed our mother. I saw it happen. So it turns out while cam had, as a girl wandered out onto the stage that night that her mom was murdered. Um, buddy was in the room like back in the closet. She, he saw that the murder happened and then Roger takes off his mask and a laser down.

And then Roger notices him. And Roger’s way of dealing with the situation is just to scare him. Don’t you ever tell anybody this, or I’m going to get you? And he slaps him across the face a couple times, but. I don’t know. I mean, for this kid to keep that a secret this long, just so that later on, he can go and murder a whole bunch of people plus him.

Right, right. 

Craig: She right. Cause she asked cam cam asks him, why didn’t you ever tell me? And he said, cause I was scared and I, you know, okay, I get it. You know, especially, you know, as a kid that would be terribly traumatic, but. I don’t know. I mean, this, this is par for the course for slasher films, you know, a little kid watches, their parents get brutally killed and then they become a killer themselves.

They say, come, come 

Todd: me immediately. Snap. You know, I just posted this thing on our page about the, the, what is it that psychologists look at a lot of villains from horror movies and we’re rating them as far as like, what are more true, uh, portrayals of psychopaths. And one of the things that they mentioned that articles, this is definitely not it.

Psychopaths are generally very cool, calm, collected, almost emotionally detached from what they’re doing and rational, rationalize this whole thing, kind of like Charles Manson, really. And, uh, in this case, this guy just goes completely off the wall. He’s just like, I just got all these ticks and he’s flailing around and he’s, he’s a, he’s like a whole different person now that he’s been unmasked as the killer, which 

Craig: again is not uncommon for these movies, these right.

These, these killers seem totally fine until they’re revealed. And then they’re just a hundred percent off their rocker. But, um, he, after camp or after buddy explains all that to cam, he goes to kill Roger, but Roger fights back and there’s a big fight in the kitchen. And in the fight, buddy, like pulls back to hit Roger, but in pulling back, he accidentally hits cam and realizes it.

So he turns around to make sure that she’s okay. Cause he didn’t mean to hurt her. And while he is distracted, Roger stabs him and gets him down on the ground and just stabs him brutally a bunch of times. And again, I felt bad. You know, you see this kid’s face, he’s a kid. I mean, he’s, he’s tall, you know, he’s a young man, but just these innocent eyes.

And I just, I felt bad for him, you know, I somehow wanted him to be okay, but I mean, I guess he’d killed too many people for redemption and whatever, 

Todd: but Roger’s kind of the, oh, he’s dead. 

Craig: Yeah. He is ultimately, he is. And he chases cam through the woods randomly. Um, and they, you know, we find out that the person in the killer’s mask on stage was Liz.

I guess buddy had tied her up and pushed her out on stage for unknown reasons. Um, and, uh, David, like when they goofed around on stage for a while, then they had. Offstage. And he pulls the mask off of her and it’s ruined, he realizes it’s her. He pushes her back on stage and says, just sing the aria, like just finish the show.

And she goes out and she starts singing it, that he comes out and starts singing with her and like take center stage, like he’s found his diva moment. Um, and Roger catches cam somehow they end up backstage again and he’s trying to reassure her, like, I’m not going to hurt you. I’m not going to hurt my little Broadway star.

But when she doesn’t submit, he’s like, you’re just like your God getting mad at. Um, and so she, she grabs a circular saw and she goes to saw him with it, but it’s unplugged. But then the guy Joel, who has a crush on her shows up and plugs it in. And so she saw as him, um, and, and, and killed. Um, and somehow in all this commotion, the bucket of paint gets dropped on Liz and then cam somehow stumbles on stage, Liz falls into her arms.

And so they’re just sitting there, both of them looking absolutely awful. And the janitor stands up and starts a slow clap, which leads to a standing ovation from the audience. Like this was the end of the show. And like they’re so impressed and the producer is 

Todd: impressed. I don’t know why I 

Craig: don’t either.

And then it cuts to black. Um, and then it opens up and I don’t remember if it said. How much longer, how much later it is, but it’s the opening night of the Broadway revival of the haunting of the opera. And why in the world 

Todd: would she want to participate in this again? I don’t know. 

Craig: Cause she’s going to be famous.

Todd: Todd. 

Craig: I mean, you pretty much do anything to be famous. Um, D uh, outside there’s like entertainment reporters and the main one is played by Dan levy. This would have been before all of his success, but I recognized him right away. I was like, woo. Cause he’s hilarious. I love him. Um, and then cam is in her dressing room and she’s kind of looking around like she’s nervous.

And then the killer breaks through the mirror and jumps at her, but then she like, jumpstarts awake. I mean, she wasn’t asleep, but it’s like, she imagined it. And then you just hear somebody from. Scream yell places, and then it cuts to black again. And that’s the end 

Todd: amending or something like that. Yeah.

Craig: Yeah. And I expected there to be, I just had this feeling that there would be a post credit scene and there’s not really, but if you stick around until the very end, you hear the, the metal killer sing something. I couldn’t make it out. Did you listen to it? 

Todd: It was crazy. I bet it was, it was all over the place.

It was, um, it was basically a revival of all of the songs in the musical, except in his metal form. Uh, and then towards the end, he was. W, why are you still here? You’re watching the movie. Uh, how did you get this movie? I hope you didn’t pirate it pirate things wrong.

They had a lot of fun with that. Let’s put it that way. 

Craig: Yeah. That’s the thing, like it is what it is. Did I love it? No, I will say that from a filmmaking perspective, it looks good. It looks great. Like, uh, yeah. It’s it’s well-made and I’ll get, as far as the cinematography is concerned, it looks really good.

It’s cheesy, but that’s okay. You know, like to each their own, the comedy didn’t really land for me. I didn’t think it was awful. And I definitely laughed out loud at some parts, but those parts that I laughed at, I laughed at because they were so stupid, but I felt. They knew what they were doing. Well, they knew it was 

Todd: stupid.

They were going for cheesy and stupid, but the comedy still has to land. Right. Or else, it just still feels a little lame. And I was just sitting, trying to think of why didn’t I really like it had all the elements I just kept comparing. Like I walked away from Anna and the apocalypse with a big smile on my face, you know?

And this one, I was just like, eh, and I was trying to figure out why. And I think it was a couple things, like you said, the comedy just didn’t really land. I liked what they were going for. And there were some chuckling, they were even some laugh out loud moments. I thought that the, I thought that the running gag of the guy who’s trying to pretend he’s not gay was pretty funny.

And that was about it. I guess, you know, the killer was menacing and the, the, the violence and gore, it’s not just about how much blood there is, but, you know, it was just about how, how violent it is, you know, how, and this movie is really violent in those places, which. I don’t, that’s fine. You know, actually sometimes it’s that works to have that sort of that shift in tone and being, being a kind of, I mean, I would get on my soap box a little bit here.

I sometimes I think that movies don’t show violence. If they’re going to show violence, like make it real it’s don’t do anything less is runs the risk of glorifying it, you know, you don’t want this to look like, you know, you can just stab people left and right. And it doesn’t really hurt. Like this is, this is good.

It’s in your face. So I like that. But immediately because there was no suspense, you know, because like we said before, it’s just kind of advice. What should we get with a lot of slasher movies really? And the fact maybe that I had kind of guessed the killer a little early on, but that wasn’t that big of a deal.

And maybe it all just kind of came down to, they were really going for this musical horror comedy and the music just wasn’t that good. Yeah, I have to agree there. And I think that was probably the biggest let down. And so, and none of it was quite good enough to, to overcome that for me. So I just kinda, and plus some of it was really dumb.

Like I think that the bit where they were stumbling around on stage, 

Craig: oh, it went on for far 

Todd: far, it went on so long and it was really stupid and an audience’s reaction to it. Like at some point they all start to get up and go and I thought, yeah, that’s exactly what I’d be doing. Like I would have been doing that like 20 minutes ago.

And I think that was supposed to be part of the gag is that you cut back here and there’s still stumbling around on the stage all this time later, but actually it didn’t come across that way. It just came across as stupid. So yeah, also the ending kind of baffled me. What was the implication that, that critic Victor or whatever.

Was he like having some kind of thing with her. 

Craig: She was performing in the show. He was leering at her lustfully yes. And then at the end it seemed like. He was very friendly with her. Like, I don’t know. 

Todd: It makes a suggestive remark and gives a wink and stuff almost as though they had this agreement. I mean, it almost felt back to the director, you know, earlier that’s what it feels like.

And I was like, well, that’s a really weird way to end this. He just got icky all over again. And I couldn’t believe this girl who’d been through so much. It’s going to be back in this show. And she’s presumably screwing this guy who’s clearly like twice his age, her age. 

Craig: Right? Well, and there was also, somebody mentioned earlier that her mother had a bad reputation.

They said that she screwed every producer. Her, her nickname was the great white lay. Um, so I don’t know if they were insinuating that she was kind of following in her mother’s footsteps in 

Todd: that regard. I know this happens. I know it’s the, you know, it’s the cliche. I mean, not just cliche, we know it’s not as 

Craig: it is cliche, it does happen, but it’s not as common as you would think.

Like there, there are skeevy people just as there are in any work place. Um, and there are people who take it. There are who take advantage of a power dynamic, but it’s not every director. It’s not every producer I’ve worked with dozens of, uh, directors, all of whom were very fine, upstanding people that it’s a trope in cinema and it does happen, um, 

Todd: to see it twice in this movie with the same girl and especially at the end when everything’s supposed to be resolving.

So, yeah, I just, um, you know, I didn’t think it was horrible. Definitely not horrible. And like you said, very well-made, uh, from a, from a technical standpoint, but, uh, it didn’t really float my boat and I could see what. A lot of people just didn’t really care for it at all, to be 

Craig: honest. So yeah, I get it. I mean, I don’t regret watching it.

I didn’t think it was awful. I thought it was fine. It was kind of fun. It was a nice little 

Todd: meatloaf was great in it. Like he clearly had his character, he had a nailed he’s this, uh, just sort of, um, desperate kind of mouse, not mousy, but just sort of desperate guy. And he seemed very natural. Very real.

Craig: Yeah. Like, uh, you know, he, he seems, I don’t know, kind of put upon throughout most of it, but then at the end, when his true colors are revealed, he’s he’s menacing and he, he can be, and he’s a big guy and, uh, when he gets aggressive, I would be frightened. So yeah, he does a good job and, and I I’m happy to pay tribute to him because he really.

Was a very, very talented artist is, you know, when the news of his passing came out, Alan and I over dinner popped in bat out of hell. And it had probably been, God knows how long since I had actually like sat and listened to that album. You know, you hear the songs here and there. Um, but it had been a long time since I had listened to.

Album. And I just kept saying, God, this is so good. Yeah. You know, the paradise paradise by the dashboard light bat outta hell two out of three. Ain’t bad is, uh, such a good song. Uh, so, you know, we may not have agreed on everything, but, uh, I would never ever challenge him on his talent. And, um, it’s, it’s, it’s too bad that he’s gone.

But as we always say in these tributes, how amazing to leave such a legacy mean he’ll be, he’ll be remembered. Far longer than we will, 

Todd: for sure. Yeah. Well, rest in peace, meatloaf. Thank you so much for listening to this episode. If you enjoyed it, please share it with a friend. You can find us online. If you just Google two guys and a chainsaw podcast, and just leave us a message with what you thought of this episode, maybe your favorite meatloaf memory, um, and, uh, any requests that you would like us to do in the near future.

Just send them to our Twitter feed, or you can post them on our Facebook page or drop a comment on our website. That’s two guys that read 40 and we will get to it at some point easily until next time, I’m Todd and I’m Craig with Two Guys and a Chainsaw.

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