Last week I was fortunate enough to attend the premiere of Alpha Girls, a horror film set and filmed in Philadelphia, using a mostly local cast and crew. As the screening itself was in Philly, the audience was especially receptive, eating up all the shots of local landmarks. But how was the film? Will it play for those who don’t walk the same streets as the characters?

I’m glad to say that I think it will. Alpha Girls is a smart, supernatural-tinged horror flick heavily in the mold of The Craft. You know, if The Craft had any balls.

Alpha Beta is a sorority with an amazing pedigree. Its sisters go on to be universally successful, but it seems there’s a secret behind that success. Witchcraft and sacrifices to  demons, of course. When a group of pledges get their hands on Alpha Beta’s ancient book of spells they turn the tables on their sisters, and then, well, then things get a little out of hand.

Falon Joslyn is great as the lead and hero of the film. Her Morgan has some baggage that film mentions but never fully explains, leaving it as character work for the actress to handle deftly. The only real question about her performance is why Morgan would be attracted to the loser she goes for.

Beverly Rivera goes a little broad, playing Cassidy as a bit of a cackling villain at times. But given the character’s arc, it never really seems like an odd or wrong choice. If nothing else, she certainly seems to be having the most fun with her role (and she really does look to be having a blast).

Nicole Cinaglia and Kara Zhang round out the main cast and both are quite good in their roles, especially once events start to escalate. The rising emotional turmoil the two young women face is palpable and wholly believable.

Alpha Girls is very cool film that transcends its indie-ness and budget. It’s fun, filled with very good performances (and some very weird cameos: Ron Jeremy as a priest and ATHF theme performer-Schooly D as a cop) and once it gets going has some really nice horror in it. Right now it’s only playing screenings, but catch it if you get a chance. The next opportunity will be at the New York Comic Con this weekend.

Also, make sure to stay through the credits for an awesome “documentary” about the sorority and its history.

I give it 7.5 GOLDFISH out of 10.

Skott Stotland is a thousand monkeys in a people costume. They have been writing for the internet for over a decade.

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