Stay Alive



      When fear criples you, when death's dark shadow surrounds you, drop

                    a rose. It will help you... stay alive.


A character in a video game called “Stay Alive” is spotted entering an eerie mansion. The character flees up the stairs and enters a room when, out of the darkness, a woman in a blood red dress lunges at the character. She knocks him off the staircase banister, and the character is killed when he is hanged by a chandelier chain. The player of the game, Loomis Crowley, quits playing and goes about a normal routine before he goes to bed. He is later awoken by a nightmare, and is killed in real-life by the woman in the red dress, in a manner similar to how his character died.

Elsewhere, Loomis’ friend, Hutch, receives a phone call informing him that Loomis is dead. At the funeral, Hutch is given all of Loomis' games by his sister, Emma, including Stay Alive. At the funeral, a blonde girl named Abigail introduces herself as a close friend to Loomis's roommate. After the funeral, Hutch arrives at a coffee shop; which is owned and operated by his girlfriend, October, and her brother, Phineus. Hutch hands October the bag containing Loomis' possessions, and Phineus eventually finds Stay Alive, which they decide to play as a group that night. That night October, Phineus, his friend Swink, and Abigail arrive at Hutch's house, with Hutch’s boss, Miller, playing at his office. To start the game, the players have to recite "The Prayer of Elizabeth" during the game’s intro. After a few hours of gaming, Miller’s character is suddenly killed after he is stabbed in the throat by the woman who killed Loomis. Moments later, Miller dies the same way as his character.

When Hutch returns to work, he is informed of Miller’s death after talking to two detectives, Thibodeaux and King. While this is happening, Phineus plays Stay Alive and just before he dies, he pauses the game. After doing some research, Hutch calls everyone together to reveal he knows how people are dying, when he notices Phineus' absence. They call him and learn he's on his way, when immediately after he is run down and killed by The Countess's horse-drawn carriage. Thibodeaux and King arrive on the scene, and King decides to play Stay Alive. King's character’s head is ripped in half, killing him. King is then killed in the same manner. Hutch and Abby decide to go to Loomis's house, where they find the address of Stay Alive’s developer, Jonathan Malkus. They proceed to go to his mansion, and, assuming no one is home, they go in. There, they meet Jonathan, who tells them about how he based his game off The Blood Countess, Elizabeth Bathory.

Meanwhile, October learns that in order to kill The Countess, you must find her tower and trap her in her body, driving three nails into her: one in her heart, one in her throat, and another in her head. Swink then announces, after seeing a newscast, that King is dead, and that the group are suspects. They all flee, later meeting at Loomis’ house to formulate a plan. October, who tries to confront the Countess on her own, is killed by her. Swink, Abigail and Hutch decide to investigate inside Malkus’ mansion. Swink decides to stay behind and play the game as both a distraction for The Countess, and an aid to the duo. Hutch and Abigail go inside the mansion, where they find various clues about The Countess, revealing that Malkus's house is actually the Bathory plantation. The group fights off The Countess several times, but Swink is seemingly killed by her after he is cornered and stabbed with a pair of rose cutters.

After a run in with The Countess’ black carriage, Hutch and Abigail locate Elizabeth’s alter. Suddenly, the door slams shut leaving Abby alone while Hutch panics and tries to open the door. She pleads with him to go ahead, as The Countess closes in on her. When Hutch reaches the tower, he finds the Countess's body. He's able to get the nails in her body in the correct places, trapping her spirit in her body just before she kills Abigail. However, October earlier informed Hutch that the only way to truly get rid of The Countess is to burn her body. After she attacks him, Hutch manages to set The Countess on fire. Realizing the exit is locked, Hutch accepts the fact that he's going to be killed by ever-increasing fire, until Swink, who cheated the game like it cheated Phineus, and Abigail kick the door open and rescue him as Elizabeth’s body burns. The movie ends in a video game store, showing that Stay Alive is now being officially released across the country. The last words are the incantation that resurrects The Countess.






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Directed by William Brent Bell
Produced by Gary Barber
Roger Birnbaum
Jonathan Glickman
Written by William Brent Bell
Matthew Peterman
Starring Jon Foster
Adam Goldberg
Samaire Armstrong
Frankie Muniz
Sophia Bush
Jimmi Simpson
Music by John Frizzell
Distributed by Hollywood Pictures
Release date(s) March 24, 2006
Running time 85 min.
Language English
Budget $9 million