Posted in Regular Feature, The Movies, The Pink Panther Snipes Again

The Stylist review

Our anti-award winning season continues as we plunge the depths for the films that would never stand a chance with the academy, or any other board of stuffy prize givers. Which is a shame for the films but hey, the Razzies have always seemed way more fun – and having just stalked their website, I can’t believe I’ve never sought out Diana the Musical.

Watch this space, I guess!

For now however, let’s explore the seedy underbelly of hair styling.

The Stylist (2020)

A lonely hair stylist becomes obsessed with the lives of her clients and descends into murderous madness.

Director: Jill Gevargizian
Starring: Najarra TownsendBrea Grant


Claire (Najarra) is a hairstylist working long hours at the salon. While outwardly shy and reserved, our girl harbors a secret. A pretty big one as it goes – our girl collects the scalps of her clients and displays them secretly in her cellar. Any time she’s feeling low, she puts them on and imagines herself in their lives.

We’re introduced to Claire as she takes on a client from out of town, a woman called Sarah. As the woman relaxes with a glass of red, she expels her own secrets, confident they’ll never see each other again. Claire’s intrigued by Sarah’s tales of work and home life – even though she’s smug and annoying – which may be why she’s compelled to murder and add her to the basement collection.

Things take a turn when Claire’s contacted by a regular – Olivia (Grant) – who desperately needs a stylist for her wedding. Claire’s usual stance on weddings is no thank you given how intense they are – but she says yes and the pair start to bond – which delights lonely Claire who lives alone and has no friends or family to speak of.

After their first time hanging out outside the salon, the pair connect over their stories about absent fathers but Claire berates herself afterwards and takes out her frustrations on the kindly barista at her local coffee shop. Which is a bit silly given its proximity to the salon (and CCTV cameras) – plus, the person who nails your coffee order is worth holding on to if you ask me.

After this particular murder, Claire decides to lock up the cellar/basement and focus on Olivia and their fledgling friendship. At Olivia’s hen do, to which she secures an invite, Claire comforts the bride-to-be when she expresses doubts about the nuptials – but overhears her other friends slagging her off in the loo. They mock the idea of inviting the stylist to the hen party which infuriates her – and experience teaches us not to mess with the girl holding the sharp scissors, am I right?

You can probably see where this is going. As Claire clings tighter to her new friend – turning up at her work, calling too many times – the more Olivia backs away. During a tense encounter, Olivia firmly requests that Claire not be ‘like this’ on her actual wedding day. Devastated and embarrassed, Claire reopens the cellar and her behaviour becomes even more unhinged. After more murder and a cheeky bout of breaking and entering – we’re getting closer to the big day. Will the fragile friendship make it?

Meanwhile, the authorities are looking for the missing barista AND Claire’s first client. Which makes dealing with warring bridesmaids, my MIL and Glynn’s ex in the lead up to my big day seem like a walk in the park.

Will Olivia’s wedding day go off with the bang she’s expecting? I think we can confidently say no. No it won’t.


See, this is exactly why I’ll do anything to avoid going to a salon. The Stylist is a little light on storyline, after you get beyond the delight of a murderous hairdresser and it has a tendency to lag a bit – but overall, it has solid bones and is quite effective.

We get little to no true backstory for Claire, which is chilling but I also want to know how the cellar came to be and who her first victim was, after all after Sarah’s murder, everything’s already set up and ready to go. Also, if she’s targeting clients then why is it only now the community have noticed people missing? Claire’s motivations do seem a bit weak but there is a sexual undertone to her attachment to Olivia, so I think there are some really interesting themes there that I wish we’d explored more.

The topics of loneliness and making friends as an adult feel quite close to my heart though and I sympathise with Claire. As a viewer I did have a snap out of it attitude to some of her behaviours but I recognise a lot of those feelings in myself. Claire just doesn’t seem to have the confidence facade so many of us adopt, especially at work.

Other than that, the scalp wigs really annoy me. Has Claire never mainlined Drag Race? What’s with the rough finish around the hairline? I feel as though Claire, who seems pretty fastidious in most aspects, would do a better job of that, especially since she’s keeping them for later use.

– Genres: Drama ∙ Horror
– IMDB user rating: 5.6
– My score: 3/5
– Runtime: 105 mins

What does Jill think about this one? Would she hit it up with her most dazzling dye-job or shave its head instead? Find out here.



40-something shark movie enthusiast and horror fan.

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