The Strangers: Prey At Night Review

The Strangers: Prey At Night
On the way to drop their troubled daughter off at a faraway boarding school, Cindy (Christina Hendricks) and Mike (Martin Henderson) put their family up in a remote mobile home park. But their night of playing cards and reconnecting soon becomes a fight for survival when three, masked psychopaths show up on their doorstep.

by Amy West |
Published on
Release Date:

04 May 2018

Original Title:

The Strangers: Prey At Night

Back in 2008, The Strangers managed to mix home invasion movie tropes with fresh ideas to create an atmospheric thriller with one heck of a wicked ending. Curiously, The Strangers: Prey At Night is a sequel that’s more concerned with paying homage to blood-soaked classics than matching its predecessor’s unsettling tone.

The Strangers: Prey At Night

Directed by Johannes Roberts and written by Bryan Bertino (director of the first movie) and Ben Katai, the film swaps the original’s tension for action-style violence, but Prey At Night takes its time getting to the scares. When the masked figures eventually show up, it feels rushed and predictable — the movie then consists of little more than scene-after-scene of characters running, stumbling and screaming until it’s time for the credits to roll.

Cinematographer Ryan Samul adds a certain finesse to proceedings, however: using gloomy street lamps to create obscured silhouettes or truck headlights to illuminate the victims’ faces. But The Strangers: Prey At Night never allows his work to breathe, nor does it make room for suspenseful glimpses of the killers lurking in the background. It’s all slash and no stalk.

The Strangers: Prey At Night

One of the most memorable moments in The Strangers was when Liv Tyler’s Kristen begged to know why they'd been targeted by these three, masked assailants. Their casual reply – "because you were home" — was chilling; simply a case of wrong place at the wrong time. It could have happened to anyone, and it made the events all the more twisted. Prey At Night has no such mystery and little similarity, other than the fact that its viewers might also find themselves yelling, “Why are you doing this to us?!” when the sequel draws to a close.

With its infuriatingly dim-witted characters and generic slasher movie feel, The Strangers: Prey At Night is a surprisingly tame and forgettable rehash. While its superior predecessor managed to boast chills, this only boasts clichés.
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