Cover Versions official movie poster

‘Cover Versions’ Review

Today, the new movie Cover Versions came out today on Digital. And it stars a multitude of stars: Katie Cassidy (Arrow), Drake Bell (Drake and Josh), Jerry Trainor (iCarly), Debby Ryan (Jessie), among many others.

Full Recap

(from left) Byron (played by Drake Bell), Jackie (played by Katie Cassidy), and Travis (played by Jerry Trainor) sitting in interrogation

The movie is a murder mystery that tells of a band, Starfoxy, recounting the night before. We look at the same day and night from all four band members’ points of view. There’s the lead singer, Jackie, the band’s newest keyboard player Kirk, Travis the drummer, and lead guitarist Byron. The story starts out simple: the band goes to a music festival and throws a party afterward. By morning, there’s a dead girl floating in the pool. Warning: major spoilers ahead.

Each point of view turns out to be a very different recount. In each one, they make themselves look better than they actually are. It’s not until we hear Byron’s retelling of the last 24 hours that we fill big gaps in the story. This band really wants to get a record deal and is willing to do just about anything to do it. Including killing their newest bandmate for his demos.

The Truth

(from left) Kirk (played by Austin Swift), Maple (played by Debby Ryan), Amber (played by Ashley Argota) and Lucy (played by Jenn An)

Apparently, the real talent in this band, at least in the songwriting department, is Kirk, the keyboard player. The only problem is he’s leaving the band, taking all of those songs with him. So the rest of the band members concoct a plan to fake an overdose. To do this, they plan on switching Kirk’s cocaine with something that’s so pure it’ll kill him. And they figure that’ll work because Kirk’s also apparently a pretty hard partier. But I still don’t get why they felt the need to kill Kirk. There are plenty of successful bands out there that don’t write their own songs. They just hire songwriters to do it for them. Yes, Kirk was their good songwriter but killing him still seems a little extreme.

Then the story gets messier when Kirk brings home three girls he met at the liquor store. Those girls then invite more of their friends, making it a full-on party. But there’s another twist that both Byron and Travis aren’t aware of. Jackie has another hidden agenda. But first, let’s take it back a little. After finding out about the impromptu house party (i.e more people equals more potential witnesses), Byron freaks out. So he switches the drugs back to what they were before. But everyone else at the party gets knocked out because the girls aren’t just here to party.

How It Ends

Jackie (played by Katie Cassidy), Byron (played by Drake Bell) and Travis (played by Jerry Trainor)

Turns out that these girls that came with Kirk are actually working with Jackie. To rob this house. But because Byron switched the drugs back, the girls end up taking the harder drugs from Jackie’s guitar case. But in their defense, they thought was just coke. Eventually, it ends with Maple (Debby Ryan’s character) face down in the pool. As for the other girls, they crash in a fatal car accident. So, they’re pretty much all guilty except for Kirk: all of varying degrees but guilty nonetheless. So Kirk is the only one who gets off Scot-free and the rest get arrested.

The twist of things was interesting but it’s still unclear who the true puppet master is. After all, the girls say it was all Noah’s (Jackie’s husband) idea. It’s also unclear whether or not Noah and Byron are having an affair. Noah could just be stringing him along. There’s one scene in the movie where Byron calls Noah to tell him that the plan is off. He says he’s not okay with going through with killing Kirk anymore. But Noah assures him it’s the only way they’ll get their record deal. Then Byron agrees or at least pretends to agree with him. After he hangs up, he proceeds to switch the drugs back to what they were before). Whatever it is that’s between them is at the very least suspicious. But Noah doesn’t end up getting arrested in the end either. So, it definitely stands out as a big plot hole to me.

Final Thoughts

(from left) Travis (played by Jerry Trainor), Jackie (played by Katie Cassidy), and Byron (played by Drake Bell)

Besides the Noah plot hole, the lip singing also kind of bothered me. The music video they play at the beginning of the movie was okay. Mostly because it’s expected in a music video. But it was pretty clear when Jackie and Kirk sang at certain points that they were lip singing. But it wasn’t because the actors were bad at lip singing. It was because the singing voices didn’t really match the actors. Katie Cassidy’s singing voice is a lot lower than her speaking voice. But Austin Swift’s dubbed singing voice was a little closer to his actual voice. Either way, it still wasn’t convincing enough.

But either way, Katie Cassidy makes for a great villain and she always has. Whether she’s playing Ruby in Supernatural or Black Siren from Arrow she’s always been great at playing both ends of the spectrum. And it kept me guessing because she certainly started out as being pretty innocent.

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