The Strangers Prey At Night review

When Johannes Roberts came to direct The Strangers Prey At Night, it would have been a side step from his previous film 47 Meters Down. This was a franchise sequel, it is a slasher film with rigid genre boundaries and of course it had a decent budget. So what do we get? This time we are heading to a secluded trailer park in the Southern states of the US. Mike (Martin Henderson) and his wife Cindy (Christina Hendricks) take a trip with their two children, Luke (Lewis Pullman) and Kinsey (Bailee Madison). They want to go to their aunt and uncle’s, who own the trailer park and have offered them a free stay. Well just as they arrive Dollface, Pin Up Girl, and the Man in the Mask return. They want to dispatch as many people as they can. This time however they have got a head start and have already removed the aunt and uncle from the scene. The problem is that the family four don’t know about this…yet…

Well you can read for yourself the press on this film. Its split in its range. One states it is a bog standard piece of genre cinema that is blissfully short and painfully contrived. The other is that this is a satirical swipe at horror cinema and in particular the slasher genre. What do I think? Well if you care then here it is. The Strangers Prey At Night is a ball of issues and one very great thing. It is a satire but its fails to get the tone right. Either that or it is not a sardonic horror send up and is a very stern unintentionally comic film. It has the issue of over writing ideas and under respecting the audience, for instance in the stalk and slash scene, we condense the narrative and then roll over and mash the idea with the audience just waiting for the end without tension or care. It also has, like much of horror cinema recently, got stuck on the stretching of idea to infinity without trying to pitch in for a sequel. Please finish it! End it! The great thing is that there are moments when the  mixed with a great visual eye. I love the moments when the film turns into a stunning use of visual depth, focal blend and captured beauty. I have never seen a swimming pool with neon palm trees look so lovely and also so soulful. It is a real skill to make it look so magical. The harshness merges into a weird space that Edward Hopper would have loved.

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