Cam Girl (2011)
By: Paul Ryan on February 19, 2012  | 
Chemical Burn (USA) | All Regions, NTSC | 1.78:1 (16:9 enhanced) | English DD 2.0 | 78 minutes (Full Specs)
The Movie
Cover Art
Director: Phillip Gardiner
Starring: Layla Randle-Conde
Screenplay: Phillip Gardiner, John Symes
Country: UK
External Links
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Mary (Layla Randle-Conde) is an intelligent, thoughtful young woman with an I.T. degree and a staunch Catholic upbringing. In order to keep up with the rent on her apartment, Mary runs an erotic webcam show from home, and has numerous regular clients. Before long, it becomes apparent that one of her clients has taken an obsessive interest in her, hiding in the walls of her residence.

With a single speaking (on-screen) character, director/co-writer Phillip Gardiner's ultra-low budget Brit indie Cam Girl has an exceptionally ambitious setup that would challenge even a better-resourced production. The script does a few things right by exploring Mary's background and personality, which helps fill out some of the running time effectively. Mary is an empathetic character (and Randle-Conde a decent actress), which helps to maintain viewer interest. Admittedly, the frequent nudity certainly doesn't hurt either. Inevitably, there are echoes of Polanski's Repulsion here – and it's certainly not the first thriller to do so – though on a much smaller scale.

Even at a mere 78 minutes, there is a lot of padding to drag the film out to feature length. One montage of Mary plying her trade is fine, but more than that is pretty blatant stuffing. Gardiner's direction is uneven, better exploring Mary's day-to-day routine than it is establishing the stalker's presence (with inconsistent POV shots undermine the visual gimmick). The final stinger is effective, though.

All up, Cam Girl is better made than one might expect from such a microbudget production, but would have worked better as a short, or as part of an anthology. There are hints of better things to come – with better resources - from all involved, however.
Shot on digital video, the image has some grain and noise at times, but is mostly quite clear.
The 2.0 track does what is required of it. Music and dialogue are clear, though speaker effects are minimal.
Extra Features
Outtakes: Lots of raw takes, re-takes and goofs.

Music Videos: "Still Love You To Death" by Angellis. "Cam Girl" by Corian.

Trailers for Chemical Burn titles House of Sin (also directed by Gardiner), Cut & Paste 2, and the hilarious-looking tinfoil hat doco The Conspiracy to Rule the World: From 9/11 to the Illuminati.
The Verdict
Watchable, but flawed, Cam Girl is a creditable stab at a microbudget thriller that doesn't quite work, but might have with a bit more refinement. Chemical Burn's DVD gives it a decent presentation.
Movie Score
Disc Score
Overall Score

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