By ARIA SALESSI
Even though they have been losing popularity recently, home invasion films are a staple the horror genre. They are among some of the more frightening horror premises. One reason being that they can easily happen. A person’s home is usually their safe haven, but when someone unwelcome breaks in, they might never feel safe again. On May 3, 2019, The Intruder invaded theaters. It has made $11 million so far on an $ 8 million budget. The production company, Screen Gems, is known for making horror films on low budgets that usually earn a lot at the box office. Examples of their profitable films include Don’t Breathe, The Possession of Hannah Grace, and Slenderman.
The film stars Meagan Good as Annie, Michael Ealy as Scott, and Dennis Quaid as Charlie. After Annie and Scott Russell purchase their dream home from a lonely man named Charlie, things take a dark turn when the landlord’s strange attachment to the home begins to interfere with the couple’s daily lives.
Although home invasion films are my favorite in the horror genre, The Intruder felt quite lackluster from the start. One reason I didn’t enjoy the film was how there was no mystery to it. Usually, in these types of films, the intruders wear masks in order to protect their identities, leaving the viewers wondering who would do such a thing. However, just from the trailer of the film, we already know who the intruder is. The lack of mystery also takes away the scare factor from the antagonist Charlie, which results in cheap jump scares having to take its place. If the jump scares were actually scary, it might have made up for how not terrifying Charlie was. Unfortunately, just like many cash grab horror films, the director didn’t put any thought into the scares, leaving all of them predictable and even amusing.
Even though I did not find Charlie to be terrifying, I still found him to be extremely creepy at times. Throughout the film, he tried getting closer and closer to Annie, which was quite disturbing. An example of this is when he brought over pizza to Annie’s house while Scott wasn’t home, due to him being in the hospital after Charlie hit him with a car. After an incident that he dealt with outside her house, he returns with an injured ankle. This results in Annie tending to his ankle, which allows Charlie to take a disturbing close up look of Annie. This was a very strange scene that made me feel very uncomfortable which shows how well Dennis Quaid can truly act. He did the best he could with his role, even if its scare factor was ruined from the start. As for Good and Ealy, they also did a good job in portraying their fear throughout the film as they were getting terrorized by Quaid’s character.
The Intruder is a weak attempt at a home invasion film that most likely didn’t leave anyone paranoid, as a proper home invasion movie should have. Its lack of suspense and scares made for an extremely boring hour and thirty minutes. The only scary thing about the film is how something so generic and dull managed to make it in theaters.