The Strangers Review

Directed by Bryan Bertino

Starring Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman

How is it that I can enjoy a film until that film ends? That is the odd feeling that settled in the pit of my stomach after seeing The Strangers.

The Strangers tells the story of a young couple, Kristen McKay and James Hoyt, who are staying in an isolated vacation home being terrorized by three unknown assailants.

The tension was suffocating when watching The Strangers, but the ending left me wanting or possibly regretting.

Those three masked assailants were especially creepy and downright vindictive. Considering their reasoning behind the home invasion, those three assailants are incredibly vicious and undeniably psychotic. Usually, these factors would equal a downright thrill fest for me, but something is missing from The Strangers‘ equation.

That something missing left me feeling unsatisfied by the end of this horror film. The Strangers is one of the only horror films to leave me completely unsure of how I feel about it. But it did deliver some tension-filled moments and other moments that had me spouting the words, “Look behind you!”

Mind you, The Strangers had its moments, including the awkward sentiments between the young couple after a botched proposal and equally horrible rejection. After a friend’s wedding, James proposes with no such luck even with his preparations at the vacation home with candles and rose petals.

But my favorite moments from The Strangers always included the masked man with the burlap sack, he knew how to creep! He seemed the more sadistic with his silent watchings rather than the masked women who always seemed to have a weapon on them.

Let’s return to the reason behind this home invasion film, which left some very unsettling feelings toward returning to my family’s cabin in the woods.

“Because you were home” does not seem like a logical explanation, hence the psychotic comment about the three unknown assailants earlier.

Could this be the reason behind my mixed feelings toward The Strangers? It might.

The film might have been better if it had been some of their friends from the wedding, but that is just me with some ideas in my head. However, I found it interesting when the unknown assailants met the boys who would later find the bodies of James and Kristen.

Somehow I am still left with mixed emotions about the film’s story, but my unsettling feelings about home invasion remain because The Strangers was certainly a thrilling film. But something was definitely missing, it may be realized with a second or third watch, but it truly might not be found.


~ by nicmarray on January 22, 2010.

6 Responses to “The Strangers Review”

  1. I haven’t seen this yet, though perhaps it suffers from the same flaw that so many recent horror flicks share: There’s no there there.

  2. That is a possibility, and I am certainly going to take another look at this film because it was a nice little tension-filled horror flick. But it is possible that I had some expectations with this film, which I try not to do as of late.

  3. I really enjoyed this one, but I know what you mean about wanting more. Maybe a part of it is that it is almost too real. In life things don’t always get answered or follow a logical flow, they just happen and the world moves on. This movie seemed to take that view.

  4. That is definitely something to think about, the realness – the reality that something so random and so cruel just happens. I will definitely have to watch this film once again.

  5. I like the fact that it wasn’t explained outside of the ‘Because you were home’ line. I think it made it that much more frightening and gut wrenching. And the scenes of the burlap sacked dude in the house was completely unnerving.

  6. I enjoyed every scene with the burlap sacked man, he was undeniably creepy. I had to do a double take to realize that he was standing in the shadows that first time he stepped inside the house.

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