Brandon Christensen (director)
02 September 2021 (released)
11 September 2021
Two vloggers struggling to maintain their subscriptions turn up a house in the country that they hope will change their fortunes. Claire (Sara Canning) and Teddy (Osric Chau) tour the US staying at Airbnb type properties passing comment during the stay with a final review. Trouble is something isn’t working anymore as they are losing subscribers.
While not a final fling the new house presents an opportunity to reset and hopefully recharge their subscriber base. An early experience of their on-film antics and it’s no surprise that they are having problems. But they have a super enthusiastic ‘superhost’ in Rebecca (Gracie Gillam) whom they think they can exploit as she come over as eccentric if not borderline potty.
Things get strange when they notice that every room has a camera and that Rebecca spends a lot time there too. Noises at night that get Teddy up add to the tension and discomfort over the whole thing. But they don’t have a choice with their subscriber numbers to think of and Claire think and says (too loudly) that they could take advantage of Rebecca’s weirdness.
Matters get more strained when a disgruntled previous host Vera (Barbara Crampton) turns up hurling a rock at the house claiming that the pair have destroyed her business. The pair give her short shrift while Rebecca’s response convince them that she is the star they need. As is the nature of these films’ things aren’t quite what they seem.
Superhost has no real pretensions, though one could read something into the vloggers need for sensationalism to draw subscribers, other than to tell a darn good horror yarn. If a touch predictable it is offset by the sparkling engaging performance from Gillam whose mood changes are carried with some aplomb though you never feel she’s overacting. Working with a full-on character like that Canning and Chau could have looked as if they were hit by a tsunami had they tried to compete using their vlogger personas. As it is they play it pretty straight which suits them and the overall vibe of the film.
It’s clear from the outset that what Brandon Christensen has decided is his priority as writer and director is to entertain. And Superhost is great entertainment that may not linger too long afterwards but you’ll be fully engaged and have a rollocking good time while you are watching it.
Superhost is available on Shudder now.