Review: ‘Star Light’ star bright? Not quite.

A supernatural thriller, STAR LIGHT involves a kind-hearted teenager, Dylan (Cameron Johnson), who crashes into a beautiful young woman (Scout Taylor-Compton) while skateboarding. She turns out to be a world-famous popstar, who is on the run from her handlers. While he and his group of friends try to help this mysterious woman, unexplained events begin to occur within the home. When Bebe’s threatening handler, Anton, shows up demanding her return, the teenagers’ refusal makes him unleash a barrage of dire and otherworldly consequences that turns a fun graduation party into a night of living hell.

Star Light feels like a copycat attempt of Tales From The Crypt: Demon Knight, with the hopes that a younger audience has no idea what that is. If you haven’t seen that yet, do yourself a favor and do so now. The acting is…  not great overall. The dinner scene in the opening of the film is so overly hostile, you may pause, make popcorn, and want to referee Real Housewives style. I give credit to the commitment of the actors. No one can say they gave a half-assed performance. Unfortunately, the dialogue is as cliche as having actors that are closer to 30 play high school students. I probably would have respected the film more had these actually been kids. The early skateboarding shots are by far my favorite bit of editing. Establishing a smalltown America was a nice choice even if it doesn’t ever pan out as purposeful in the end. 

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre homage opening, which comes back around later deserves applause for the bait and switch. I know teens and sex and horror are a give-in for the genre, but there is one moment that seems so utterly misplaced it’s a full-on facepalm. The CGI is fair at best. I can change the color of my eyes with a Snapchat app. That does not mean I should be making a feature film. The climax of the film is hands down the most interesting but there is no payoff. If you’re going to insinuate that a Taylor Swift-like character has power over people, why not exploit that to its fullest extent. That’s the story! That’s an entire series or franchise. As someone who specializes in genre films, and as a genuine fan of all things scary and magical, Star Light felt less like it was made by experienced filmmakers and more like a local college kid’s project for a class. 

Mitchell Altieri and Lee Cummings’ STAR LIGHT hits Digital and On Demand August 4.

About Liz Whittemore

Liz grew up in northern Connecticut and was memorizing movie dialogue from Shirley Temple to A Nightmare on Elm Street at a very early age. She will watch just about any film all the way through (no matter how bad) just to prove a point. A loyal New Englander, a lover of Hollywood, and true inhabitant of The Big Apple.