Strangers: Prey at Night : Movie Review

Strangers: Prey at Night (2018) - Movie Poster
Writer-director Bryan Bertino's "The Strangers" was a sensational—and sensationally terrifying—thriller when it was released in 2008, and a decade later it hasn't lost a shred of its power. Alongside 2007's "Them" and 2008's "Funny Games," the film was one of a trio released less than a year apart which arguably jumpstarted the home-invasion subgenre. Indeed, there is something innately identifiable and distressing about the presumed security of one's own sacred space being shattered. That the three masked psychopaths in "The Strangers" had no motive—their only explanation for targeting the characters played by Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman: "Because you were home"—made it all the more chillingly plausible. Just like Bertino before him, every beat of director Johannes Roberts' (2017's "47 Meters Down") just-as-potent sequel, "The Strangers: Prey at Night," is saturated in his adoration and reverence for horror's legacy. Paying welcome tribute to certain iconic beats from the original while bravely forging its own path, the picture works as both a tremendously well-oiled exercise in jittery apprehension and a damn fine companion piece to what has come before.

Parents Cindy (Christina Hendricks) and Mike (Martin Henderson) are worried enough about the increasingly rebellious behavior of 15-year-old daughter Kinsey (Bailee Madison) to make what they see as a tough but necessary decision. En route to a boarding school they hope will set her on a better path, the family of four—Kinsey's more-together 17-year-old brother Luke (Lewis Pullman) is also in tow—stop for the night at Gatlin Lake Getaway, a near-deserted trailer-park resort where their aunt and uncle own a home. Before they've had time to settle in for the evening, a knock on the door and a single question from the shadowy woman standing before them—"Is Tamara home?"—will act as harbinger for what quickly turns into a nightmarish fight for survival.

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Author : Dustin Putman,