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MOVIE REVIEW: The Intruder

After seeing The Intruder one couldn’t help but feel this movie lacked the punch and potential that it showed from the various teasers, trailers and previews that were released. The film is listed as a horror, drama, mystery, but lacks a true feeling of horror as it uses cheap scare tactics to deliver the fright it is looking for on numerous occasions. Furthering that point, most anything that could be considered scary was shown early on in previews and trailers, making it less impressive and making it lose a lot of its luster and impact.

Dennis Quaid

Despite the cheap scare tactics, most horror and thriller movies are made by its main characters as they can either make you empathize and root for them to survive, or you feel no connection and disconnected, making the movie tough to be fully invested. This movie had some solid performances, especially by Dennis Quaid who’s pretty good as this creepy, yet seemingly harmless house owner. Quaid gets creepier as the movie continues and really gives this movie a chance to reach its potential.

The other two main characters, Meagan Good and Michael Ealy, who play Annie and Scott Russell respectively, both give uneven performances for the most part. Good has her moments, but neither really makes you feel invested in them. She plays an unassuming, neighborly wife who seems too kind to notice faults in anyone, while Ealy plays a suspicious, territorial (and rightfully so in the end) husband who we learn has been unfaithful in the past. Neither delivers the performance needed to drive this movie even when in the same scenes as Quaid.

The Intruder

Delving a little deeper and into the script and this is where the movie lacks punch. A few specifics that jump to mind are the marital problems of Scott and Annie, which seems forced. Scott actually does kiss another woman, but quickly retreats to his house and to Annie when he receives a call from her and we realize she is uneasy from text messages from him. This storyline is brought upon far too quick and not really followed through as soon after they have a verbal spat, it is over and they are a happy couple never to discuss again. The marital problems don’t fit in this movie based on how they wrote the main characters.

Another problem with the script is the suddenness of the climax of the movie. The buildup to get where the movie needs to be as a horror, which is Quaid actually trying to lay claim to his house again, is far too long for such a short payoff. When all is said and done Quaid’s intrusion and fight is brought upon too slow.

One positive to the script was the writing of Scott’s best friend Mike, who was suspicious of Charlie (Quaid) long before anyone else. Mike (played by Joseph Sikora) plays the usual person who seems crazy only to be proven right later in the movie and does a great job with the wide range of emotions he is given throughout in a limited role. His performance is important to setup the climax of the movie and give Quaid the first chance to truly show off his other side.

Review

Criteria - 48%

48%

Total Score

Overall this movie is not terrible, but that should not instill confidence in it either. With the uneven performances by the main characters, the unimpressive script writing, lack of punch and horror, and undeveloped storylines this movie doesn’t reach the high bar the new generation horror/thriller movies have set, earning it a failing grade overall.

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About David Albiani

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