|Directed by||Jill Gevargizian|
|Cinematography||Robert Patrick Stern|
|Edited by||John Pata|
|Music by||Nicholas Elert|
|Distributed by||Arrow Films|
The Stylist is a 2020 American horror drama film produced, co-written and directed by Jill Gevargizian. The film is based on the director's short film of the same name and stars Najarra Townsend and Brea Grant. The film premiered at the 2020 Fantastic Fest.
Claire, a lonely hairdresser based in Kansas City, Missouri, is a murderer who discreetly kills and scalps her clients, storing their scalps in her cellar as a way to cope with feelings of self-loathing. Her friend Olivia asks Claire to do her hair for her upcoming wedding, which Claire agrees to. Claire tries to fit in with Olivia's friends, but is mocked for being socially awkward. After several failed attempts at suppressing her deadly urges, Claire finally gives in and murders Olivia. She then puts on Olivia's scalped hair and dress, and walks down the aisle pretending to be her. When the groom unveils her, he panics and the audience runs away in terror. Claire stays alone in the church crying, because even with Olivia's scalp, she can't get what she wanted.
The Stylist premiered at Fantastic Fest on September 25, 2020, and was subsequently screened at the Final Girls Berlin Film Festival on February 5, 2021, as well as screening in a Narrative Feature Competition at the Florida Film Festival in April 2021.
The film was released on Arrow, Arrow Films' streaming platform, on March 1, 2021, in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. On June 8, 2021, it was released on Blu-ray, DVD, and video on demand platforms via Arrow Video. The Blu-ray version features a short film titled "The Stylist" (which was director's short film in 2016) and a new short "Pity" and "The Invisible Woman", a visual essay by author and critic Alexandra Heller-Nicholas. It also includes behind-the-scenes footage, outtakes, and location scouting.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes the film has a score of 90% based on reviews from 40 critics, with an average rating of 7.3/10 rating. The website's critics consensus reads, "A slasher with flair and crafty patience for the kill, The Stylist marks writer-director Jill Gevargizian as an uncommonly sharp genre filmmaker."
Starburst's Andrew Pollard called The Stylist "a brilliant movie", while Noel Murray of the Los Angeles Times described the film as a "treat for the eyes, making great use of color, lighting and women's fashions to create a world where attractive surfaces mask something ugly."
Kristy Strouse of Film Inquiry wrote, "The Stylist has everything one can want from a horror film; a talented female lead, lots of chills and bloody enticements, and a wickedly impressive style".
Simon Rother of The Horror News Network wrote, "The Stylist is nonetheless an interesting film that portrays the life of an extreme introvert who has difficulty coping with the social world, all while concealing a disturbing hobby and obsession".
Kat Hughes of The Hollywood News praised the film for its "[i]nherently feminine, gorgeously shot and styled [visuals]", as well as "[its] killer performances, sticky scalping's, and costumes to die for".
According to Meagan Navarro of Bloody Disgusting, "Gevargizian demonstrates a strong, clear vision for her sympathetic psychopath, and The Stylist presents as one of the more sophisticated depictions of a burgeoning serial killer".
Following film's screening at the Final Girls Berlin Film Festival, Erin Grant of the Fear Forever wrote "The Stylist is an incredibly insightful slasher with the right mix of sincerity and comedy".
- Puchko, Kristy (March 1, 2021). "Review: 'The Stylist' Brings Shocks, Gore, And Surprising Heart To Its Slasher". Pajiba. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- "The Stylist". Fantastic Fest. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Miska, Brad (February 8, 2021). "No Fairytale Here, 'The Stylist' Art Displays a Scalp as a Trophy". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Millican, Josh (September 25, 2020). "First Clip from THE STYLIST Premiering Tonight at Fantastic Fest". Dread Central. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- "Feature 4: The Stylist". Final Girls Berlin. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- "The Stylist". Florida Film Festival. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- "ARROW Blooms Into Spring with March Lineup: "THE STYLIST," "THE INVISIBLE MAN APPEARS," "THE INVISIBLE MAN VS. THE HUMAN FLY," and more!". Rue Morgue. February 28, 2021. Retrieved August 7, 2022.
- Latchem, John (June 8, 2021). "'Nobody,' 'City of Lies' Among New Digital and Disc Releases June 8". Media Play News. Retrieved August 7, 2022.
- @TheStylistFilm (May 16, 2021). "Behind the scenes with @Najarra Townsend in Claire Lair. Helping set the scene. Watch the film now streaming on @ARROW_Player. We release on VOD and Blu-ray on June 8. (USA/Can/UK)" (Tweet). Retrieved August 7, 2022 – via Twitter.
- Tina (May 26, 2021). "Review: The Stylist". 60 Minutes With. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Salmons, Tim (June 19, 2021). "Stylist, The (Blu-ray Review)". The Digital Bits. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- "The Stylist (2020)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved October 30, 2021.
- Pollard, Andrew (July 6, 2021). "The Stylist". Starburst.
- Murray, Noel (March 5, 2021). "Review: In horror films and thrillers, location, location, location often isn't enough". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on March 6, 2021. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Strouse, Kristy (March 5, 2021). "The Stylist: A Haunting, Stunning Debut". Film Inquiry. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Rother, Simon (July 25, 2021). "Film Review: The Stylist (2020)". The Horror News Network. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Hughes, Kat (October 25, 2020). "'The Stylist' Review: Dir. Jill Gevargizian [FrightFest Halloween 2020]". The Hollywood News. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Navarro, Meagan (September 26, 2020). "[Review] 'The Stylist' Evokes Bloody Sympathy for the Psychopath". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
- Grant, Erin (February 21, 2021). "Film Review: The Stylist-Final Girls Berlin Film Festival". Fear Forever. Retrieved October 18, 2021.