Friday’s Film Clip

This is a clip from the 2008 horror film “The Strangers”.  This film is one of those (and there seem to be an alarming amount of them) films that the world in general seems to think is kind of horrible and I think is freakin’ brilliant.  I have no idea why people do not think “The Strangers” is good.  Unlike most modern horror films, it does not rely on loud noises or sudden images to startle you.  In fact, there is little-to-no “soundtrack”; any music is environmental music, meaning it’s music the characters are actually listening to.  If somebody jumps out of something, they simply jump out of it, there is not a loud music cue to “cheat scare” you.  With “The Strangers”, you’re scared because what is going on is scary, not because the filmmakers have jumped out of a closet at you.

You don’t need to know anything about what’s going on in this clip to be creeped out.  The music you hear is coming from Liv Tyler’s vinyl record player.  In this scene, all that happens is someone knocks on a door and says “Is Tamara home?”, and writer-director Brian Bertino (along with his editor Kevin Greutert and cinematographer Peter Sova) play the scene pitch-perfectly, holding each shot for a succinct amount of time, lighting each set piece masterfully, finding just the right sound for the ‘knock’ and the right level of muffled-ness for the voice beyond the door.  Watch, enjoy, and then go rent “The Strangers”:

3 Responses to “Friday’s Film Clip”

  1. Kyle Sundgren Says:

    This movie was directed brilliantly. After the first act it kinda got silly with them running around outside, but the first act before they realize that someone really is in the house, that is scary as FUCK!

    The part that got me was the face you see off in the background in the dark when Liv’s in the kitchen (coulda been the male character. Been a while since I’ve seen it, but I do remember the scary image!).

    Good pick.

  2. I never saw this. Going out to rent it soon.

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