Day Twenty One: The Strangers movie review
When this movie first came out in the theatres, it didn’t even hit my radar. Most modern American horror flicks these days (and back then) have all either been crap remakes, torture porn, or so by the numbers that it hasn’t been worth my time to even care. After finally seeing The Strangers on DVD a year or so ago, I’m glad I didn’t see it in the theatre. Not because it was crap and a waste of money, but because I would have embarrassed myself in front of a packed theatre because this movie scared the H-E-double hockey sticks out of me.
The movie starts off innocently enough: a couple heads to their vacation house in the middle of the night after attending a wedding. James (Scott Speedman) is also planning to propose to Kristen (Liv Tyler) that evening. Shortly after their arrival, they get a knock on the door by a blonde woman asking for someone. Kristen and James let them know she has the wrong house and go about their night. When James leaves to get Kristen cigarettes, the blonde woman comes back and starts to bang on the front door. Kristen tries to call James, but all the phones are dead. While Kristen is home alone, three masked people harass and intimidate her until James gets home.
The masked home invaders
From there, things go from bad to worse. The three masked assailants begin to terrorize Kristen and James (and even one of their friends who shows up about part way through the movie). I don’t want to say much more because I don’t want to ruin the movie, but just be ready to be completely scared, uncomfortable, and anxious while watching everything unravel for Kristen, James, and Mike. No lie, my wife and I watched this movie in the middle of the day, and I kept leaving her alone in the room to distract myself (I am ashamed to admit this, but it’s true – this movie scared me so much, I left my wife to fend for herself). Looking back on it, I don’t think the actual movie is scary, but the scenario and situations are scary and uncomfortable. The real horror lied in the complete and utter helplessness Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman portrayed with their characters. I just kept hoping they would persevere, but as the movie continued, I just didn’t know if they would/could (did they or didn’t they? watch the movie to find out).
So, it’s Friday and we’re getting close to Halloween. In most of the country it’s chilly, wet, and rainy, which means it’s the perfect time to bundle up in some blankets and scare the crap out of yourself. If that sounds like a good plan, I recommend the movie you watch to scare the crap out of yourself be The Strangers.