Review: The Strangers (2008)

8

“Well they want something. People don’t just stand out there, staring at us like that. They want something.”
– James Hoyt

SYNOPSIS: A young couple staying in an isolated vacation home are terrorized by three unknown assailants. – via IMDB

After always hearing how good a horror The Strangers is, I decided to finally give it a shot with my husband. While he hated it to the core, I can’t say that I liked it an awful lot more. Where do I even begin?

I know! The logic of the characters! These two are just hands down the stupidest two I have seen together in a horror in a really long time. For one, he returns and finds her hysterical and he’s like “it’s nothing”. Then he’s all macho and leaves her alone and realises there are a bunch of crazy people out there stalking, and he’s just like “oh whatever”. Together these two progress to make some of the most idiotic decisions I have seen in horror/thriller in a while, and let’s face it, this is not really a genre of smart moves.

The two characters we are following are also not really nice people, so you aren’t really invested in their survival, either. The movie starts with promise, it really did, but it went downhill so fast my head is still spinning if I think about it. You just say The Strangers around my husband now and he will start a bitchfest about this movie.

The Strangers is overly vague, which would have been fine, had it just been a better watch. With better writing, the potential would not have been lost, and there was quite a bit. A nonsensical home invasion, masks, psychologically torturing people, initially a great atmosphere, the whole lot. But instead it is bogged down by flawed logic, unlikable characters, a score I didn’t like (too loud for action/music ,speech nonexistent), faulty pacing, therefore letting itself down before it even got started. The tension that was built in the beginning, the scares it put forth, dwindle in the face of the infuriating decisions made by the characters. Overall, it is nothing but a bland and frustrating experience.

Rapid Review: Super (2010)

18

super cover

“You don’t butt in line! You don’t sell drugs! You don’t molest little children! You don’t profit on the misery of others! The rules were set a long time ago. They don’t change.”
– Frank D’Arbo

SYNOPSIS: After his wife falls under the influence of a drug dealer, an everyday guy transforms himself into Crimson Bolt, a superhero with the best intentions, but lacking in heroic skills. – via IMDB

super

GRADE 6So I checked this out because Eric absolutely loved it, and it looked interesting. Let me tell you, this is totally not what I expected it to be. At all. Dark comedy for sure, but the biggest thing that comes from this is real sadness, loneliness and desperation. I felt so freaking sorry for Frank. Everything about him was just pitiable, and Rainn Wilson did a great job in bringing his character to life. Kevin Bacon was a serious asshat, icky! Then, of course, there is Liv Tyler, post screwing up her totally beautiful face. Ellen Page, too, is a character that is pretty cool until she puts on her costume. It’s like she totally freaks out, and I didn’t like it. Overly sexualised, manic, stupid, I could not bear her character by the end of it, which is quite disappointing. Not to mention one absolutely disgusting forcible scene that comes up towards the end – it did not sit well with me at all. Anyway, this story starts and it is already sad, injects some strange bits of humour in here, but it didn’t always work for me (and I am a big fan of a dark comedy), and it keeps going, sad, depressing, lonely. Those words are truly the three words to describe Frank and his existence. Nathan Fillion pops up from time to time as the incredibly ridiculous Holy Avenger, and the little TV stints he and the “students” had cracked me up – Fillion is always up for the crazy. Let’s not even forget to mention that Rob Zombie voiced God. That was awesome. I think the best thing about this film was the cast, hands down. The story was good, albeit a little silly, but I liked it. I enjoyed that everything was not perfect for The Crimson Bolt – he looked absurd, his crime fighting took forever to take off, when it did it was legitimately violent (like some fry cook literally going out and busting up dealers, totally the thing you could picture if someone did take this on), and his partnership building with Boltie was just so strange. It looks like I have had a lot to say about this, but I actually haven’t really had anything to say about it. It is dark, it is strange, it is weird, it isn’t bad, it is something you are certainly going to have to check out in order to make up your own mind about it.