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The Strangers Horror Movie 2008

Updated on May 8, 2020
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Movies are magical. They are a form of story telling that just cannot be replicated by any other medium. The whole film experience rocks.

Home Invasion Nightmare

Don't Answer The Door
Don't Answer The Door

What Is The Strangers About?

This movie has me intruiged and you're about to find out why. The setting for this frightful tale is simple and powerfully unsettling. A young couple, played by Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman, are settling in for the night at a remote vacation home. The secluded setting makes them somewhat surprised when they hear a knock at their front door. Scott answers it and that is the worst mistake of his life. It begins a nightmare that neither he nor Liv can escape. At the door is a young, blonde girl who's face cannot be seen because the porch light is not working. She asks a simple question "Is Tamara home?" Scott explains to her that she has the wrong house and the girl quietly turns and leaves. Both Scott and Liv think that was a little strange but have no idea that it was just the start of torturous ritual that they are about to endure. The girl wasn't looking for any Tamara at all. She was, in fact, a member of a trio of brutal, masked home invaders who have now targeted Liv and Scott as their next victims.

The Audience Reaction to The Strangers

But that terrifying situation of home invasion is not the thing about this movie that intrigues me. What I find so compelling is the reaction of the people that watch it.

The Audience Disagrees

Audience Can't Agree
Audience Can't Agree | Source

Wasted Talent

When you think of an audience reacting to a horror movie you tend to think of them yelping and screaming and jumping in their seats. The Strangers has certainly caused a lot of people to do exactly those things but it also had the surprising effect of making people talk. And argue. Quite a lot, in fact.

One of the most telling things about this movie is the audience reaction to it. If a movie doesn't cause the audience to react then it has failed. Well this movie certainly caused a reaction. It sparked a very passionate response that fractured it's viewers down the middle. Some people loved it, some were critical of it. But they all felt passionately about it. They might not all agree on the movie but the one thing they all agree on is that the director, Bryan Bertino, has talent. He has a good eye and a sense of style. Some people feel that his talent was wasted in this story but you'll have to judge that for yourself by watching it and forming your own opinion.

The Strangers Movie Trailer

Who Has Seen This Movie

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A Personal Attack

This story attacks us in a very real, very personal and very tender spot,.in our own homes. We go home with our loved ones and we feel safe. We feel in control and protected. Or at least we should. But this movie strips all of that sense of security away from us and attacks us where we live. It comes into our home, into our private places and assaults us in brutal ways that will scar us for the rest of our lives. This movie will change the way that you live. If that isn't a precious testimony to the talent of everyone involved in bringing this film to the screen then I don't know what is. This is a life changing experience that you will be telling your friends and family about for a long time to come. Every time there's a knock at your front door, you'll hesitate, remembering what happend to the victims in this twisted tale.

Home Invasion Victim Liv Tyler

The Strangers is a Slasher Movie
The Strangers is a Slasher Movie

Not Homicidal Maniacs

And that may be the scariest thing about them.

Why the Bad Guys in The Strangers Are So Scary

The trio of abusers that invade Liz and Scott's home are not the gibbering lunatic types that drool at the mouth, scream insanely and chop people up with a wild eyed stare. And that may be the thing that makes them so scary. These villains act calmly and in complete control. They are not scared... like their poor victims Liz and Scott and even you are when you are watching this movie. Fear does not touch them. They are above that. It's almost like a Pepe Le Pew cartoon where the victims run in a frenzied panic while the killers calmly stroll from place to place always appearing where you dont want them. They are relentless and uncaring. They do not stop. They have the power. You are powerless. But these killers are not some over the top super-machines of death. They are still realistic and that makes them more terrifying, the fact that they are just people. How could people like you and me be capable of doing these horrible acts? This movie makes you face the truth of horror films without giving you any 'out'. There's no tragic story of the killers to help you justify watching it or make sense of it. They are just killers who kill. They enjoy your terror. They revel in their own control. The near silent trio don't spout any quippy one liners or anything else. It's just the torment and the torture. No excuses. They like what they are doing for it's own sake. Just like you enjoy watching horror movies. So do yourself a favor and just settle in to enjoy this powerfully unsettling experience. And remember to be careful the next time you hear a knock at your front door. Who knows who you will find out there?

Knock Knock

Who's at your door?
Who's at your door?

Add The Strangers to Your Own DVD Collection

The Strangers
The Strangers
A lean, briskly paced and exceptionally creepy thriller, The Strangers earns its scares the old-fashioned way: through atmosphere, sound design, and a simple yet undeniably upsetting central premise that allows for maximum tension throughout its running time. Attractive young lovers Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman are already having a bad day--she's turned down his marriage proposal--before a knock on the door in the middle of the night announces a full-fledged siege on their remote vacation home by a trio of masked assailants. The film's first third delivers the most consistent shivers as the visitors make their presence and intentions known to Tyler; the second half grows more frantic and bloody before a gruesome finale that may leave viewers either rattled to their core or bothered by its empty nihilism. Speedman is fine as the downtrodden male lead (who's seen tucking into a carton of ice cream after being rejected), but it's Tyler who impresses the most by shouldering the lion's share of the terror. First-time writer/director Bryan Bertino impresses by forsaking the current passion for over-the-top violence (save for the finale) in favor of more traditional means of generating fear, and if his project borrows heavily from other films, most notably the French chiller Them (which shares its "inspired by a true story" origin) and Michael Haneke's Funny Games, at least he's taking from the best. The sound design is among the many technical standouts, and the unsettling score by tomandandy (The Hills Have Eyes) pleasantly evokes Ennio Morricone's fuzztone-heavy work for Dario Argento in the early '70s. On a completely unrelated note, LP fanatics should appreciate how both the film's heroes and villains share an affinity for folk and country music on vinyl. --Paul Gaita

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 HaremCinema


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