The Clown at Midnight (1998)
Written by: DMG
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Jean Pellerin
Producer: Gary Howsam, Gilles Paquin
Screenwriter: Kenneth J. Hall
Date Released: 1998
Christopher Plummer as Harlan Caruthers
Margot Kidder as Ms. Ellen Gibby
Sarah Lassez as Kate Williams
James Duvall as George Reese
Tatyana Ali as Monica
Ryan Bittle as Taylor Marshall
Melissa Galianos as Cheryl “Walnut” Webber
Rating = 1.5/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
A group of high school students are recruited to restore an old opera house led by their teacher, Ms. Gibby. However, the opera house was home to a murder that took place years ago involving an opera singer, Lorraine Sedgewick, who was allegedly killed by her lover and colleague, Lorenzo Orsini. One student by the name of Kate is traumatized after she finds out that she is in fact the daughter of former opera singer, Lorraine. Despite Kate’s fears, she joins the group of students in their quest to restore the old opera house. Unbeknownst to the group, the killer may still be lurking around after all these years.
This film is a typical slasher flick so there will be some scenes of blood and gore. However, the scenes are more suggestive than graphic. In one scene, one victim is killed with an axe, but the action is more graphic than the actual gore it produces. There is enough blood to send a message but this film is no blood bath.
The Grave Review
There’s not much to say about this film. The Clown at Midnight was not engaging at all. The villain was tiresome and the motive for his actions were trivial at best. I tried to be engaged and see how the story unravels. But, unfortunately, there was not much in the way of character development or backstory. Overall, this film is not my first, second, third, fourth or fifth choice for a slasher film.
Christopher Plummer plays the previous owner of the old opera house. Although, we have high respect for Plummer and his acting, he does make enough of a mark on this film to bring it to an engaging level. In fact, Plummer has only a small number of scenes that he is actually part of. Even, Tatyana Ali, who we know from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, added some cuteness and spunk to the film. But unfortunately her acting was overshadowed by the overall bore that this film was.
The opera house itself was a nice setting. Although it is uncertain if this film was trying to be a knock-off of Phantom of the Opera or perhaps another clown, slasher film that demonstrates a lack of originality.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives The Clown at Midnight (1998) one and a half graves out of five graves.
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You may also like our film, Clownhouse.