Wednesday, July 20, 2016
DIRECTOR: Travis Zariwny
WRITER: Travis Zariwny
Elizabeth is a talented cellist who is at a crossroads in her life and career. She is being trained by a mean-spirited and pervy cellist teacher and also not talking to her on and off again boyfriend. She is simply trying to live her dream. Little does she realise that this will be the least of her worries. As she sleeps, eats, showers, and even leaves her apartment, she is being watched. Elizabeth is unaware that someone is watching her every single move and is already inside her apartment.
In 2016, we've had two films with the title Intruder. This movie is not to be confused with the other film Intruders. This film is the more minimalist and straightforward of the two movies. Intruder may have a pretty colourful, creepy, and somewhat vibrant looking poster but this movie is anything but lively. Instead, we have a film that really doesn't offer anything new in the home invasion sub-genre of horror. In fact, this may be one of the most lifeless and dull home invasion films.
This will also be the second film this year that I've seen from director Travis Z. It's also now the second time he's flat-out disappointed me with one of his movies. The first film is the utterly pointless remake of Eli Roth's cabin in the woods movie, Cabin Fever. A film that used the same script and was almost shot for shot, death for death. Offering nothing new seems to be Travis Z the trademark at this point. Let's hope he impresses with his next film.
I see a lot of people and reviewers throwing around the term 'amounts to nothing' or 'it makes no sense in the end'. Intruders is the very definition of those comments. It opens with a lady being suffocated with a bag who is connected to our main character Elizabeth. Yet after her murder, we never see or hear if Elizabeth finds out about the death. This also happens later in the film when another character close to Elizabeth is killed in her apartment, yet we never see any resolution to her two mates deaths. It all seems rather pointless.
Intruder also tries to throw a few red herrings at the audience but ultimately fails. It's unsuccessful due to its predictability. You'll have no problem guessing who the villain is after our first encounter with them. We have all the typical and standard male red herring tropes. We have the addition of a pervy music teacher, the creepy next-door neighbour, the boyfriend who comes into her life again and the genuine, nice guy. If you've seen any horror movie ever, you'll have this figured out in no time.
The film is completely dry when it comes to suspense or scares. A few jump scenes and loud noises are attempted in the movie, but they never landed for me. I think Intruder was trying to win an award for the most use of 'creepy out-of-focus' villain standing in doorways or closets. The movie uses this trick so often it bordered on nausea. It wasn't scary the first time nor was it the fiftieth time. Repetitive is an understatement with Intruder.
By the time the ending rolls around. Intruder gives us one of the weakest endings I think I've seen in horror cinema in 2016. It also feels like it has as many endings as Lord Of The Rings: Return Of The King. Not one end credit sequence but two. When the movie abruptly ends after an hour and thirty minutes where our intruder never ends up striking or attacking Elizabeth, it all feels like a build up for nothing. The first scene in the credits hints at a dark outcome, but it's just not satisfying to me.
The acting is also terrible. I'm sure Louise Linton is a decent actress usually, but In Travis Z's hands, she is dreadful. She was given the worst role in the Cabin Fever remake, and now she has nothing to do here in this movie. Let's not get me started on her going in and out of her accent in this film. I was unsure if her character was meant to be from Scotland or she was putting on an American accent as it was all over the shop. I couldn't place her as it's never explained where she is from. It all just comes across as awkward. John Robinson is underused in this film, and Moby looked utterly uninterested in his small role.
Lastly, I really need to talk about the extremely awkward sex scene that came across looking like some pop 'music video' from the early 2000's or the weird lingering of the camera in the shower that showed complete nudity of our leading actress. I assume this was added for the simple fact that having nudity in the rating might get teenage boys into seats. The film also lacked any blood or violence. So not only is it not scary, but the film is also bloodless.
DEATH TOLL: 2
BLOOD AND GORE:
- Suffocated with a plastic bag.
- Someone is stabbed in the back of the neck.
Intruder joins a long list of home invasion movies in 2016 that includes; Intruders, Hangman, Ratter and 13 Cameras. Sadly Intruder is at the bottom of that list. The film really doesn't add anything new to the home invasion sub-genre. It also lacks scares, suspense, and blood. The movie even ends up making no real sense, has a predictable twist and terrible performances. There isn't much I found to love about Intruder. This was strike one for Travis Z.