Clickbait – USA, 2018

‘You only die once… so make sure it’s live!’

Clickbait is a 2018 American comedy horror feature film directed by Sophia Cacciola and Michael J. Epstein from a screenplay by the latter and Jeremy Long. The Launch Over production stars Amanda Colby Stewart, Brandi Aguilar, Seth Chatfield, Ryan James Hilt and Ikaika Jonathan.

A college student who will do just about anything for internet fame is kidnapped by a fan wearing a Donald Trump mask, and her reluctant roommate is the only one who can save her…

Reviews:

“…a strong undercurrent of biting social commentary presented in a satirical manner. Everything from social media to corporate sponsorship to instant celebrity to the corruption of law enforcement and government is well and duly skewered. But fret not, because while these themes are being explored, there is a true reverence to our beloved horror biz on display as well (especially for the slasher and giallo genres).” Horror Fuel

“The filmmakers cleverly walk the fine line between satire and straight up spoof and it works perfectly. Without spoiling too much, the cut in commercials in the movie are a real treat. Moments like the those, and movie’s bravery not to shy away from gorier, grosser moments make this one really stand out.” Horror Society

“Not all of the jokes land perfectly, but when they do (I’m thinking of the “sexy underwear” conversation between Emma, Bailey and Detective Dobson – perfect) – expect genuine guffaws. In the end, the film is enjoyable and visually entertaining (and original). However, social commentary with only the light whispers of “real” characters, doesn’t necessarily make for the most engaging audience journey.” Michael Klug, Horrorfreak News

“The director duo of Sophia Cacciola and Michael J Epstein again deftly construct a self-contained world, this time a corner of the internet where status is the only thing that matters. The social commentary comes out a little more heavy-handed than the likes of Ten or Blood of the Tribades, but to be fair much of internet stardom is the result of being completely shameless.” Andrew Marshall, Starburst

Clickbait‘s humor is an evolution of the Kaufman schlock in Troma films, updated for a modern audience and dare I say a little more sophisticated for adults. Exaggerated performances mirror SNL sketch delivery but in the comedic tone of the film it works.” Without Your Head

“There were a couple of things that detracted from the show, but all in all I think it was a well put together story that pays homage to other thrillers (a stalker wearing a celebrity mask painted white??? Where have we seen that before??). It is well worth seeing if you are looking for a “not too intense” stalker film.” Jason Kittrell, Zombies in My Blog

Director’s statement:

Great horror films find ways to create physical manifestations of abstract fears and anxieties. Modern popularity culture imposes a certain pressure on younger people to create complex, performative identities, and to fearlessly face the consequences of the resulting fracturing of their self-image.

We wanted to create a “monster” that manifested from those performative pressures, and one that is actually fed and brought to life by every character in the movie inadvertently. We hoped to depict the different types of personas people take on in social-media forums, and the impossible reconciliations they face.

We hope you will find these circumstances tragic and sympathize with the victims who have this vapidity thrust upon them, rather than viewing the participants as themselves vapid. We do not wish the film to be a condemnation of millennials, so much as a condemnation of the way that they have been commoditized by Facebook, Google, and other Internet giants.

Release:

Clickbait premiered at the GenreBlast film festival at the Alamo Drafthouse in Winchester, Virginia on September 1, 2018.

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