KSL MOVIE SHOW

KSL Movie Show review: “The Strangers” is basically the same as the other movies

May 17, 2024, 1:00 PM

KSL movie show host steve salles next to The Strangers movie poster...

Editor’s note: This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — There’s nothing quite so terrifying as the thought of masked strangers breaking into your house and doing unspeakable things to your family, simply because you are home. It’s every parent’s nightmare and Hollywood is well aware.

So much so, that this is the fourth effort under “The Strangers” banner and that’s if you don’t include the “Funny Games” movies that started clear back in 1997, again in 2007, plus a chilling French version simply called “Them.”

Finnish Director Renny Harlin, who had a string of hits in the 90s (Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger and the Long Kiss Goodnight) has become the latest to attempt to breathe new life into an age-old storyline, but with the gutsy addition of two new chapters.

Well, there had better be something original coming, because Chapter 1 is a not-so-subtle reshoot of ALL the previous “Strangers” movies.  However, since a new generation of horror fans may not know the “deets” of those earlier films, here’s a refresher course.

Related: KSL Movie Show review: ‘IF’ has a solid message and a sense of melancholy

Ryan and Maya are on a road trip to Oregon for a potential job opportunity for architect Maya. They decide to pull off into a small town for a bite to eat, apparently, something that doesn’t happen very often, by the way the townies are glaring at them at Carol’s Diner.  
 
After an uncomfortable meal, they get back in their car, but it won’t start. The nearby garage can fix it in the morning, but in the meantime, the couple will have to stay at the only rental available, which just happens to be an old cabin outside of town. Oh, shoot!
 
As they cozy in for an evening by the fire, a rather emphatic knock at the door rattles their sweet bliss.
 
“Is Tamara here?” Asks the young female voice standing in the shadows.  
 
“Sorry, you must have the wrong house,” the couple replies.

More from the KSL Movie Show: KSL Movie Show review: ‘Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes’ has great action and a few minor setbacks

I will admit, Harlin does offer some decent suspense, but eventually, this cat-and-mouse game between Ryan (Froy Gutierrez), Maya (Madelaine Petsch), and the three Strangers, Scarecrow, Dollface and Pin-up Girl grows wearisome and I’m thinking, “Can we just get to it already?”
 
(Yes, I know that’s an awful thing to admit)
 
I say that mainly because everything is basically the same as in the other movies.  
 
Even the two creepy Mormon kids handing out pamphlets (I call them the Deacons of the Corn) are brought back in this redo. 
 
So, Mr. Harlin, you’d better have some new tricks up your sleeve for Chapters II and III. Otherwise, real fans of the better “Strangers” movies are going to be more than a little upset with your uninspired horror rehash.

“THE STRANGERS: CHAPTER 1” (C-) Rated R for horror violence, language and brief drug use. Starring Madelaine Petsch, Froy Gutierrez, Ryan Bown, Mats Lajcak and Olivia Kreutzova. Directed by Renny Harlin (“The Long Kiss Goodnight” “Die Hard 2”) – filmed in Slovakia. Running time: 91 minutes.

The KSL Movie Show with Andy Farnsworth and Steve Salles airs Fridays on KSL NewsRadio from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Follow the show on Facebook, and join The KSL Movie Show Club for exclusive perks by texting MOVIE to 57500.


THE STRANGERS: CHAPTER 1(C-)
 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

KSL Movie Show

tuesday movie poster next to ksl movie show host steve salles...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: ‘Tuesday’ is a movie you need to experience for yourself

In this KSL Movie Show review, we explore "Tuesday," which personifies death as a talking macaw.

11 hours ago

ksl movie show host steve salles stands next to inside out 2 movie poster...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: ‘Inside Out 2’ is almost as good as the original

Is the long-anticipated movie "Inside Out 2" as good as the original? KSL Movie Show host Steve Salles says no, but it’s pretty darn close!

11 hours ago

ksl movie show host steve salles next to poster for bad boys ride or die...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” is a surprisingly engaging action adventure

In this KSL Movie Show review, dive into "Bad Boys: Ride or Die," which follows two partners willing to go to the ends of the earth to make things right.

7 days ago

In "The Watchers," a 28-year-old artist gets stranded in a forestexpansive, untouched forest in Wes...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Review: ‘The Watchers’ is a decent debut from a famed director’s daughter

Yes, we’re talking about surprise-ending director M. Night Shyamalan and now his protégé daughter Ishana Shyamalan who has made her first horror film with producer daddy watching over her shoulder. 

8 days ago

ksl movie show host steve salles next to ezra movie poster...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Review: ‘Ezra’ is delightful and a bit far-fetched

"Ezra's" younger star pulls the film together with a "delightfully genuine" performance.

14 days ago

The story of competitive swimmer Trudy Ederle, the first woman to ever swim across the English Chan...

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: ‘Young Woman and the Sea’ is a family MUST see

'Young Woman and the Sea' garners "inspiring, heartwarming and heroic" results.

15 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...

Comcast

Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

KSL Movie Show review: “The Strangers” is basically the same as the other movies