Superhost Movie Review

Written by Janine Pipe

Released by Shudder

superhost poster large

Written and directed by Brandon Christensen
2021, 84 minutes, Not Rated
Premiered on Shudder on September 2nd, 2021

Starring:Sara Canning as Claire
Osric Chau as Teddy
Gracie Gillam as Rebecca
Barbara Crampton as Vera

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If you’re anything like me, when you are working your butt off non-stop, you wish for a duvet day. A time where you can just hide away in bed and watch as many movies as possible without feeling any guilt, as you are too sick to do anything else. Well, this was a case of Monkey Paw-esque ‘be careful what you wish for’, as I recently had COVID and let me tell you, there were days where I could barely open my eyes let alone watch movies. But as I started to feel remotely better, I turned on Shudder to see what was afoot. I recalled the Final Guys podcast had spoken about Superhost, so I popped it on.

Ho. Lee. Cow.

What a fun movie.

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First off, I was excited to see Osric Chau, as I am huge Supernatural fan, and Gracie Gillman from Teen Beach Movie, also being a massive Disney nerd. Add in the iconic and superb Barbara Crampton and I was already hyped.

One of the things I dug from the outset is the fact we know the super host Rebecca is going to be the villain, just look at the poster and the tag line – 'Don’t Forget to Like and Survive', and the opening line in the trailer, ‘There’s Something Wrong with Rebecca.’

I have no issues with going straight in knowing who is who, there is still plenty of character development, and you learn more about Rebecca as the movie goes on.

In a nutshell, Superhost follows a couple of travel vloggers, Teddy and Claire, as they stay in a dream vacation rental property and vlog their experience. Hits and subs have been decreasing, so they are hoping to get some great footage to spice things up again and get those likes and shares rising. Things that would normally cause alarm – keypads not working, an over-friendly host, cameras everywhere – concern Teddy, but Claire is so obsessed with building their channel, she is excited by the opportunity to film potential ‘viral footage’. She is also massively resentful that they’ve had to borrow money from Teddy’s parents. And from there, chaos ensues…

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Whilst we already know from the poster and trailer, the super host herself, Rebecca, is going to be, let’s say, interesting, it doesn’t spoil the tension that builds up nicely and the added bonus of scenes with Barbara Crampton. There isn’t enough of her, but that is a personal pet peeve because she’s awesome. Her character is great and her last scene with Rebecca is fabulous. 

Whilst I didn’t find it particularly scary, it doesn’t mean it isn’t a good movie, just more fun than spooky. There are some genuinely creepy moments and of course Gracie’s performance amped it up to 11. I’d love to know who she was channeling, Annie Wilkes or Norman Bates maybe, maybe even Jack Torrance at times.

Superhost is yet another movie that was shot during the pandemic, so a lot of the already minuscule budget was spent adhering to COVID protocol, but it doesn’t show. It’s a great story with relevant characters and most of all, Gracie’s maniacal grin should go into the history books of horror icons.

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Movie: 4 Star Rating Cover

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Janine Pipe
Staff Reviewer
Janine has enjoyed horror from an early age, frightening herself with ghost stories and learning the craft from Stephen King. After trading in a police badge and an apple for the teach (ing assistant) er, she decided to try her hand at something she loved – writing her own scary stuff. She has many terrifying tales published and has been nominated for a 2020 Splatterpunk Award. She hopes her mum never reads a certain story about a hole in a tree … As well as reading and writing, she is an editor and publicist for Kandisha Press with her BFF Jill, where she is always on the lookout for new women’s voices for their anthologies. Her favourite authors and influences are quite obvious when you read her work. But she’d like to remind you they are: Glenn Rolfe, Hunter Shea and Tim Meyer. When not writing, reading or reviewing, Janine can be found at home with her husband and daughter, planning their next trip to Walt Disney World and drinking obscene amounts of coffee.
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