Home Movie Vault Disc Vault Coming Soon Join Our Mailing List Articles About Us Contest Soundtrack Books eStore

  Publicity Stills of "The Strangers"
(Courtesy from Shaw)

Director: Bryan Bertino
Cast: Liv Tyler, Scott Speedman, Gemma Ward, Kip Weeks, Laura Margolis, Glenn Howerton
RunTime: 1 hr 23 mins
Released By: Shaw
Rating: PG (Violence and Frightening Scenes)
Official Website: http://www.thestrangers.net/

Opening Day: 3 July 2008


Lock the doors. Assume you're safe.

The horrifying events that took place in the Hoyt family's vacation home at 1801 Clark Road on February 11, 2005, are still not entirely known.

Champagne. Rose petals. Candlelight. It was supposed to be a night of celebration for Kristen McKay (Liv Tyler) and James Hoyt (Scott Speedman). But after leaving a friend's wedding reception and returning to the house, everything had collapsed for the happy couple.

Then came a 4 a.m. knock on the door and a haunting voice.

Is Tamara here?

Writer/director Bryan Bertino explores our most universal fears in "The Strangers," a terrifying suspense thriller about a couple whose remote getaway becomes a place of terror when masked strangers invade. The confrontation forces Kristen and James to go far beyond what they thought themselves capable of if they hope to survive.

Movie Review:

In this review, I shall attempt to make myself sound intelligent and explain why this movie will induce people to whip out cold hard cash from their wallets to scare themselves in the cold and pitch dark cinema. Scroll up this page and you’ll see a term “genre”, and it tells you that this movie is a “thriller”. Some research on the Internet tells me that a “genre” is a loose set of criteria for a category of composition, and is fixed by conventions. Genres are vague categories with no fixed boundaries, and in film context, are one of the most important factors in determining what a person will watch.

And for that matter, pay to watch.

Next, I shall proceed to attempt explaining the term “sub-genre”. To put it simply, genres can be divided into sub-genres. For example, the thriller movie can be further branched into action thrillers (Violence! Guns! Explosions!); disaster thrillers (Floods! Earthquakes! Volcanoes!); erotic thrillers (Sex! Jealousy! Murder!); and in this case - horror thrillers (Knives! Screams! Blood!). First time director Bryan Bertino probably understand the concept of genre movies well enough to make this slasher film which does not have much of an objective except to make viewers scared and jumpy every ten minutes or so.

And after churning out 200 odd words of pseudo intellectual blabber, I shall attempt to finally talk about this movie starring, well, eight characters (two good guys, three bad guys, three other inconsequential supporting characters). Headlining the movie is Scott Speedman (Underworld) and Liv Tyler (The Incredible Hulk) who play a young couple who chose to stay in an isolated vacation house after attending a wedding reception. Wrong move, you two – because the lovely house will be invaded by three masked strangers, and the let’s just say, there will be blood.

There is really nothing much to talk about here, considering that the 83 minute movie wasn’t made with the intention to tell a story. You just get three strangers (we can’t imagine a more apt movie title) who turn up uninvited into the couple’s life and makes things really difficult for them. You can walk in halfway into the movie and still understand what’s going on. In fact, the idea of three masked strangers walking around the house and terrorizing the clueless couple can be rather creepy – you wouldn’t want that to happen in your prettily furnished house, would you? This is where the movie delivers some fine scares – not that a seasoned scary movie viewer won’t expect them though.

There is also nothing much to comment about the actors. Scottman and Tyler tiptoe, crawl and run around the house looking petrified and frightened. Once in a while, Tyler would let out a high pitch shriek to add increase the tension of the otherwise quiet movie. What we are amused with are the three faces behind the masked strangers. What was it like appearing behind the shadows for most of the movie? What was it like to pop out of nowhere to scare the protagonists? What was it like to get no recognition for being the most entertaining aspect of this slasher horror thriller?

I salute your professionalism: Gemma Ward, Kip Weeks and Laura Margolis (yes, these are the actors behind those creepy masks).

Movie Rating:

(There is no indication of any plot in this movie, and is strictly for fans of the slasher horror genre)

Review by John Li


. Funny Games (2008)

. Untraceable (2008)

. Fracture (2007)

. The Flock (2007)

. The Number 23 (2007)

. Disturbia (2007)

. Saw IV (2007)

. Vacancy (2007)

. The Hills Have Eyes (2006)

. High Tension (2005)

DISCLAIMER: Images, Textual, Copyrights and trademarks for the film and related entertainment properties mentioned
herein are held by their respective owners and are solely for the promotional purposes of said properties.
All other logo and design Copyright©2004- , movieXclusive.com™
All Rights Reserved.