Strangers (Blu-ray)

Directed By: Bryan Bertino Starring: Liv Tyler Scott Speedman

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Product Overview

Explore your worst fears imaginable with this shocking suspense thriller inspired by disturbing true events.

After a 4 a.m. knock at the door and a haunting voice, Kristen McKay (Liv Tyler) and James Hoyt's (Scott Speedman) remote getaway becomes a psychological night of terror as three masked strangers invade. Now they must go far beyond what they thought themselves capable of if they hope to survive.

Specifications

Studio Universal
SKU 208606923
UPC 025195052719
UPC 14 00025195052719
Format Blu-Ray DVD
Release Date 10/21/2008
Keywords
Murder
Serial Killers
Stalkers
Theatrical Release
Thriller
Editors Note
Note For his film debut, director Brian Bertino has crafted a fantastically creepy horror flick based on the very simple premise of strangers who come knocking late at night. Kristen (Liv Tyler) and James (Scott Speedman) have arrived at a secluded vacation home in the woods after attending a friend's wedding. It's four in the morning, and they're both tearful and emotionally exhausted after a disagreement about their relationship. As they awkwardly try to navigate the long night together, they are distracted by the sound of a heavy knock at the door. They open it to find a dazed young woman hidden in the shadows. Assuming she is lost, James sends her away, but Kristen is disturbed by the late-night visit. When James leaves to go on a drive and pick up some cigarettes, Kristen is left alone, and we watch her move through the huge house in a painfully eerie silence, all the while knowing that she is being watched. By the time James returns, Kristen is in hysterics, and together they must face the terrifying fact that they are indeed in grave danger.^Both Tyler and Speedman give excellent, understated performances that lend the film a truly frightening edge of realism. The story's simplicity is a refreshing change from over-the-top torture films like SAW, and the violence in the film is minimal, and much of it off camera. THE STRANGERS also lacks any big-budget special effects. You won't find any CGI creatures or armies of zombies. The only monsters depicted here are the very real human kind, which is what leaves you thoroughly spooked and shaken, and ready to push a chair against your own front door.
Reviews
Los Angeles Times "First-time writer-director Bryan Bertino's taut, spare thriller is plenty scary....Anchored by convincing performances from Scott Speedman and Liv Tyler....This is an enormously unsettling movie." 05/30/2008
New York Times "[S]pare, suspenseful and brilliantly invested in silence, Bryant Bertino's debut feature unfolds in a slow crescendo of intimidation..." 05/30/2008
Empire 3 stars out of 5 -- "This is undeniably effective suspense-horror, and Bertino stages quiet chills and short, sharp shocks with a technical expertise..." 10/01/2008 57
Sight and Sound "[T]he tension remains consistently high....It accrues a real power to frighten through small touches..." 11/01/2008 p.71
Total Film 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his lean, very mean house-invasion thriller from first-time director Bryan Bertino doesn't put a foot wrong....THE STRANGERS is chillingly effective..." 01/01/2009 p.154
Directors
Bryan Bertino
Actors
Liv Tyler
Scott Speedman
Cast & Crew
Glenn Howerton - Star
Liv Tyler - Star
Peter Clayton-Luce - Star
Alex Fisher - Star
Laura Margolis - Star
Kip Weeks - Star
Gemma Ward - Star
Scott Speedman - Star
Tom and Andy - Composer
Nathan Kahane - Producer
William Purcell - Special Effects Coordinator
Sonny Mallhi - Executive Producer
Missy Berent - Set Decorator
Michael J. Hudson - Special Effects
Christina Ritzi - Stunt Double
Roy Lee - Producer
Doug Davison - Producer
Peter Sova - Director of Photography
Wilson Tang - Visual Effects Designer
Linwood Taylor - Art Director
David Hill - Special Effects
Susan Kaufmann - Costume Designer
Bryan Bertino - Screenwriter
Trevor Macy - Executive Producer
Kelli Konop - Executive Producer
Marc D. Evans - Executive Producer
Cal Johnson - Stunt Coordinator
Joe Drake - Executive Producer
John D. Kretschmer - Production Designer
Bryan Bertino - Director
Technical Info
Original Release Date 2008
Catalog ID 62106176
UPC 00025195052719
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 86 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Subtitles English, French, Spanish
Available Audio Tracks English, French Dubbed, Spanish Dubbed
Aspect Ratio
Widescreen  2.35:1
Reviews
ReviewSource ReelViews
Review We tend to think of our homes as places of safety and refuge. The illusory nature of such a belief is quickly dispelled in Bryan Bertino's debut feature, The Strangers. A chilling horror film about a home invasion, this movie doesn't break any new ground on a plot level, but its interesting cinematography suffuses the production with an overpowering combination of paranoia and claustrophobia. This is one of those rare horror movies that concentrates on suspense and terror rather than on gore and a high body count. By keeping the premise simple and making the small group of characters seem like genuine human beings, Bertino sets the audience up for a tense and uneasy 85 minutes...The Strangers is so effectively produced that if you arrive home after a night showing to find the electricity off, you will have misgivings about going inside. Horror movies come in two categories: those that deal in supernatural creatures and those that have their roots in very real dangers. The escapism that often categorizes and distances viewers in the former is absent in productions like this. There's pain and blood in The Strangers, but the movie is more about psychological torture than the physical variety. It's intense but not necessarily fun and may disappoint less sophisticated horror fans. However, for die-hard supporters of unsettling peeks into the dark side of human nature, this is a welcome excursion.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 8
ReviewSource Chicago Sun-Times
Review My mistake was to read the interview with the director. At the beginning of my review of "The Strangers," I typed my star rating instinctively: "One star." I was outraged. I wrote: "What a waste of a perfectly good first act! And what a maddening, nihilistic, infuriating ending!" I was just getting warmed up...And then, I dunno, I looked up the movie on IMDb and there was a link to an interview with Bryan Bertino, the film's writer and director, and I went there, read it and looked at his photo. He looked to be in his 20s. This was his first film. Bertino had been working as a grip on a peanuts-budget movie when he pitched this screenplay to Rogue Pictures and then was asked to direct it. He gave a friend his grip tools and thought: "Cool, I'm never going to need this anymore! I'm never using a hammer again." Then he told the interviewer: "I still had to buy books on how to direct"...So I thought, Bryan Bertino is a kid, this is his first movie, and as much as I hate it, it's a competent movie that shows he has the chops to be a director. So I gave it 1.5 stars instead of one...Still harsh, yes. I think a lot of audience members will walk out really angry at the ending, although it has a certain truthfulness and doesn't cheat on the situation that has been building up..."The Strangers" is a well-shot film (the cinematographer is the veteran Peter Sowa). It does what it sets out to do. I'm not sure that it earns the right to do it. Bertino shows the instincts of a good director; I hope he gets worthier material.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer Roger Ebert
ReviewRating 5
Features
Rated R, Unrated, English, Spanish, French, Dolby Digital (5.1)
Product Attributes
Video Format Blu-Ray
Quotes
Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times ...spare, suspenseful and brilliantly invested in silence, Bryan Bertino's debut feature unfolds in a slow crescendo of intimidation.
Jennie Punter, The Globe and Mail Both Speedman and Tyler deliver solid, nuanced performances as a couple caught at the most fragile moment in their relationship.
Jessica Reaves, Chicago Tribune Anchored by convincing performances from Scott Speedman and Liv Tyler...this is an enormously unsettling movie.
Michael Rechtshaffen, The Hollywood Reporter A spare, creepily atmospheric psychological thriller with a death grip on the psychological aspect.
Scott Tobias, The Onion A.V. Club ...as an exercise in controlled mayhem, horror movies don't get much scarier.

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