The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018) Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018) Review

Horrorific content by adrian on January 11th, 2020 | Movie Review | Home Invasion, Phobia, Killer, Confined, Maniac

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It's about a family who find themselves on the bloody end of the bloodiest home invasion you'll ever see.

The Strangers: Prey at Night was directed by Johannes Roberts (who also directed 47 Meters Down and Roadkill) and stars Christina Hendricks (from The Neon Demon), Bailee Madison (from Don't Be Afraid of the Dark) and Martin Henderson (from The Ring).

Never underestimate the kindness of strangers.

The Strangers: Prey at Night Review

Prey at Night is the sequel to The Strangers that came out ten years prior. The concept is the same, just amplified in every way. The neighborhood is still desolate, but this time the victims leave the house so you can see just how hopelessly desolate it really is. The home invaders still kill, but this time they slaughter. The soundtrack is still unique, but this time it's over the top and blaring through the streets.

In the original Strangers you never really learned why the neighborhood the doomed couple were staying in was empty. The desolation was as mysterious as the home invaders motivations. In Prey at Night you learn early on that it's some kind of mobile home vacation community, one everyone abandons come winter. This is a really cool element of the movie since signs of people are everywhere, there's just no actual people anywhere.

What IS everywhere is blood. Lots and lots of blood. Stab wound blood, slashed throat blood, impalement blood. This sequel is way more violent than the original Strangers. Some reviewers consider it torture porn, I don't think I'd personally go that far, but it's also not too far off.

Overall, I found Prey at Night to be way more entertaining than the original, which is saying something since I really liked the original Strangers. The thing with The Strangers is it's really just a home invasion movie, while Prey at Night also gives you a slasher with enough nods to other horrors to keep things interesting. The nod to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre near the end is especially awesome.

Like the original, however, this sequel does have its share of unrealistic aspects. The home invaders (who happen to be named Dollface, Pinup Girl, and Man in the Mask) have an annoying ability to magically disappear and reappear whenever they damn well please. And a tendency to somehow know exactly where their victims will be hiding next. In a closed market in the middle of the night? Pinup Girl is already there just hanging out in the shadows. In the very back of a dark playground tube in the middle of a park? Dollface got there first. Inside a locked up community clubhouse? Man in the Mask is just chillin' by the pool.

But just like the original, none of these implausibilities actually hurt the movie, they just add a sprinkling of cliche we all love to hate in our horrors.

Worth Watching?

Hell yeah, Prey at Night is a blast. Aside from a few horror cliches, it actually feels unexpectedly real and unsettling. And it has one of the coolest swimming pool knife fight scenes in modern cinema. The ridiculous song that plays over it has been stuck in my head for days.

The Strangers: Prey at Night Review (2018) Worth Watching? - ALL HORROR Tweet it

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