The Scooby series’ latest direct-to-video original movie, Stage Fright finds the Mystery Incorporated gang—Fred (voiced by Frank Welker), Daphne (Grey Delisle), Velma Dinkley (Mindy Cohn), Shaggy (Matthew Lillard) and of course, Scooby-Doo (Welker, again) traveling to an old opera house in Chicago, where auditions are being held for an America’s Got Talent-style TV competition. Everyone is very excited when Fred and Daphne make it to the final round as a singing duo.
Other contestants include, a bratty, young singer named Chrissy (Ariel Winter); pop violinist Emma (Isabella Acres); master magician The Great Pauldini (John O’Hurley) and mega-diva Lotte Lavoie (Vivica A. Fox). Soon the competition takes a backseat, when a mysterious phantom wreaks havoc throughout the auditorium!
Back in the 1970’s, the opera house was transformed into a disco, enraging someone. Now, the mysterious phantom is wreaking havoc on all the talent show’s contestants, focusing on one person in particular. The phantom is up to all his usual tricks, lighting fires and essentially making the auditioning process impossible. The Mystery Incorporated gang decides to investigate further, quickly discovering that the “phantom” isn’t quite who they expected. In typical Scooby-Doo fashion, a series of “unmaskings” occur before the gang discovers who is really behind the hijinks.
While younger children likely won’t understand that this film is a spoof of Phantom of the Opera, there are more than enough hijinks and silliness to keep them entertained. I have to admit though, as a long time Scooby-Doo fan, I couldn’t help but feel like Stage Fright was better suited to a television segment, but was instead stretched out to a 78-minute feature film. There are a couple of sudden, seemingly unnecessary detours—Shaggy and Scooby visit a Pizzeria and polish off a huge pie—that are obvious time fillers. Thankfully, these don’t interrupt the fun and flow of the feature story.
Presented in the 1.78:1 aspect ratio, Warner has provided Scooby-Doo! Stage Fright with a solid 1080p transfer. Colors are bright and bold throughout, with no apparent bleeding. Sharpness is also consistent.
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1. The surround mix packs a nice punch, Music and effects flow nicely from the rears and the LFE channel is robust when needed. Fidelity is strong throughout.
English SDH, and French subtitles are available.
As special features, Warner provides two episodes from the classic Scooby-Doo television series:
- Never Ape An Ape Man (SD, 22:04)
- Don’t Fool With a Phantom (SD, 22:04)
- UltraViolet Digital Copy