The world needs more campy rock musicals starring Meat Loaf. Not convinced? Go listen to the extraordinary "Bat Out of Hell" again or watch "The Rocky Horror Picture Show."

But the world definitely doesn't need more movies like "Stage Fright," a fairly excruciating example of the form that completely wastes the distinguished Mr. Loaf.

He plays the director of a theater camp haunted by a serial killer as it puts together a production called "Haunting at the Opera" that comes across as precisely the lame Andrew Lloyd Webber rip-off its title suggests it would be.

The picture is filled with bad songs featuring lyrics like, "I'm gay, but not in that way," self-consciously dopey overacting and a general aesthetic that suggests the filmmakers had so much fun making the movie that they forgot to consider what the audience might have to say. There are a few fun moments amid the inanity but not much of a midnight movie future here.

Stage Fright
1.5 stars
Directed by Jerome Sable | Starring Meat Loaf, Allie MacDonald, | Rated R
Playing at Cinema Village