Friday, February 21, 2014

Stalker Movie Review – Nightmares Don't End When You Wake Up

Runtime: 77 minutes
Release Date: October 17, 2011
Rating: R/NR?
Director: Martin Kemp

Paula is a best selling write struggling with her next book. After the urging of her publicist/agent Sara, she decides to spend some time in her old family home. Everyone thinks that getting her away from it all for some time will help her focus and get her to buckle down and write. Not long after arriving, she meets the housekeeper who will take care of the home and her needs.

Things change when Paula meets Linda. As her new personal assistant, Linda promises to do whatever it takes to help her write, but it quickly becomes clear that Linda has some darker ideas in mind. Between a sudden injury that never seems to go away to the fact that Linda always seems to be popping up out of nowhere, Paula finds that getting away from it all might be the biggest mistake that she ever made.

I'll confess something here: this movie was hard to follow. I sat down to watch it with my roommate after watching Hell Baby (review is coming soon!), but a lot of the time, we watch movies while chatting about other stuff and playing online. This time, we were both watching the movie the whole time. At one point, he looked over and asked me if I had any idea what was going on, and I had to admit that I wasn't sure.

The problem is that Stalker tends to jump around a lot. One minute we're watching a scene of Paula and Linda having a conversation, then someone else will appear, it will jump to a scene of Sara talking to Paula's doctor, then a conversation between two completely different people, and then back to Paula. Given the ending of the film, the jumping around makes sense. The director wants to keep you on your toes and unsure of what's happening, but it just made the movie hard for me to follow.

Despite the jumping around, it's easy for anyone to predict the ending. My roommate very casually said, "I bet X, Y, and Z" at one point in the movie, I agreed, and damn if that isn't exactly what happened. If the director hoped that the ending would surprise anyone, he probably shouldn't have used so much foreshadowing in the earlier parts of the film. It left me unsatisfied and feeling like I just watched a made for television movie.

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