Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Intruders Movie Review – Beware When You Break Into Someone's Home

Length: 90 minutes
Release Date: January 15, 2016
Rating: R
Director: Adam Schindler

Anna (Beth Riesgraf) suffers from acrophobia and lives alone in her family home with her dying brother Conrad. One night, he asks her to spend some time with him outside, but she can't get over her fears to take even one step outside. Just before he dies, she learns that he set it up so that she can keep the house and will have enough money to survive. Though she dreams of leaving, she knows that will never happen. She does, however, offer Dan, the man who brings them food every day, a large bag of money so that he might get away from their small town.

Though Anna wants to go to his funeral, she can't make it out the front door. Three men, hearing about the money in the house and assuming that she'll be gone, break into the house. One of the men, Perry, seems more dangerous than the rest. When he learns about her phobia, he throws her outside and then later murders her pet bird. While running through the house to get away from the men, Anna accidentally kills the one who attacks her with her own hair pin.

The men originally assume that they'll kill her and take all her money, things turn when they realize that Anna isn't just a normal woman. After killing their friend, she tricks them into the basement, races upstairs, and turns a switch that causes the basement stairs to recede into the wall. Anna the makes it clear that she and her brother had a dark side, which is a side that all those men will discover for themselves.

Every so often, I flip on my XBOX One and watch a bunch of trailers to see new films coming out. That was where I first saw the trailer for Intruders and first realized that it was a movie I had to see. Riesgraf is absolutely amazing as Anna. The only thing I knew her from previously was the television show Leverage, but she's a completely different person here. She kept me interested and entertained, and I couldn't wait to find out more about her deep secret. Martin Starr, who many might know from the under appreciated Freaks and Geeks, is spine tingling as Perry. When he grabs her bird by the neck and grabs a hammer with the other, don't be surprised if you want to shout at him to stop. Rory Culkin also does a pretty good job as Dan and will leave you wondering what connection he has to the other men and whether he'll help those guys or Anna.

The first half of Intruders was so good that I kept shushing my boyfriend and actually told him to leave the room if he couldn't be quiet. That first half does a great job of setting up the rest of the film and has a dark and somewhat unsettling tone. We see just what it looks like for Anna when she tries to leave her house, and we get why she would beg them to let her back inside, even if it means they might kill her.

As good as that first half was, the second half faltered a bit. We learn what happened to Anna and Conrad and why they have a little girl's bedroom set up in the basement with microphones and video feeds capturing everything that happens. It seemingly comes out of let field and might leave you suspending disbelief a little more than you should. I also feel like the film didn't come full circle enough. It doesn't seem like Anna went through enough to get the ending that she did. I really liked Intruders, but I liked the first half a lot more than the second half.

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