Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween Horror Watch #38: The Strangers and Bleeders

The Strangers -- Bryan Bertino

The trailer for The Strangers is one of the most effective I've seen. The creepy atmosphere, those damned masks, the skipping record, all the crap going on in the background, "Because you were home." It all works. The first time I saw The Strangers I was underwhelmed. It would've been hard not to be given my expectations (the only thing tempering those were Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman). The ending put me off, though I can't imagine why now. It's still not a great movie. There's not a whole lot of depth to the characters or the story. Fortunately, the mood is practically overbearing in the best possible way. Things don't let up. And the sound design is masterful. If you've got a good surround sound system at your disposal, you're in for a treat.

I'm not really sure how to fit this in, so I'll just end with it. There's a character who I call Dick Hallorann much to my amusement. It will be obvious why.

Bleeders -- Peter Svatek

I know what attracted me to Bleeders. It stars Rutger Hauer, was co-written by Dan O'Bannon, and is based on "The Lurking Fear" by H.P. Lovecraft. I should've realized it fell deep into Hauer's career nadir and O'Bannon hadn't done anything worthwhile since Total Recall seven years prior.

There's really not a lot to say about Bleeders. Maybe with a better cast/director it could've been something interesting, but it's mostly a mess that telegraphs where it's going from nearly the start. Props to it having a creepy VHS cover and at least it doesn't shy away from killing kids. There's always a silver lining.

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