Origin/Director: USA/Bryan Bertino
Viewings Tally: This is my first viewing! I never got around to it back in the day.
Synopsis: After returning from a wedding reception, a couple staying in an isolated vacation house receive a knock on the door in the mid-hours of the night. What ensues is a violent invasion by three strangers, their faces hidden behind masks. The couple finds themselves in a violent struggle, in which they go beyond what either of them thought capable in order to survive. [Letterboxd]
Reely Bernie’s Take: Let’s be honest: The home invasion horror movie has exhausted itself. I see the cover design for this movie and immediately think of the copycat, You’re Next (2011), the overlooked Them (2006), the doubly done and fearfully successful Funny Games (1997 And 2007), and Wait Until Dark, which pioneered the home invasion genre in 1967.
It’s all setup for “Don’t open that door!” horror, led by two beautiful Hollywood leads who do their best representing the quintessential victims in distress. There is the early scene when one of the “strangers” appears out of a hallway shadow that made me hold my breath. The sound effects, source music, and an abrasive film score achieve suspense on a minimalistic level.
Yet, it becomes very obvious, very soon that we’re dealing with typical low IQs, cellphones that (of course) run out of charge, and lots of dumb questions like, “Who is that?” (Liv Tyler, we don’t know who is terrorizing the house either. Is the Pope Catholic?)
The last 30 minutes are devoted to running, hiding, chasing, and then some hiding again. Who knew a home invasion could be so redundant?
The Shot that Won’t Let Go:
I understand the need for home invasive anxiety entertainment (haha), but when its base is this base, then I can’t react with appreciation. Instead, I react with boredom.
Final Score: This flick gets 1.5 canvas-masked/Friday the 13th, Part 2 aesthetic wannabes out of 5
(Maybe I was too harsh. But, I certainly did get bored at the end.)
Did you see it? What did you think?