STAY ALIVE

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With the current influx of horror video games, I thought it would be fun to watch Stay Alive. The premise is here is a cursed video game being spread around where if the player dies once while in the game world, they die in real life in a similar fashion (think The Ring‘s videotape). I was semi-confident that with a supporting cast that I approve of, including Frankie Muniz (Malcolm in the Middle), Sophia Bush (One Tree Hill, The Hitcher), Adam Goldberg (Dazed and Confused, The Hebrew Hammer) and Jimmi Simpson (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia), I would at least be able to recommend it. Sadly, not even the actors make this film likable.

Being a gamer all of my life, I instantly recognized the time period of when Stay Alive came out after seeing the first glimpse of video game graphics. The CGI effects were not far behind in this 2006 virtual slasher. I couldn’t understand how a movie released nationwide in theaters was so cheesy. I knew what the basis of the plot was going in, so I was prepared to allow the film to bend the rules slightly, but the end result was just ludicrous.

This is another case of a horror movie that’s rated R but is supposed to appeal to fraidy-cat teens. Shame on you, Stay Alive, for your unsatisfying performance. Once again, I’m left looking forward to the next night’s film, hoping it won’t be as much of a disappointing package. I’m going back to playing The Evil Within and Alien: Isolation. I might even review them upon completion. If you are looking for a truly smart, frightful piece of entertainment, stay away from Stay Alive.

★★☆☆☆

2 fraidy-cats out of 5

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