31 Days to Scare ~ Intruders



The Facts:

Synopsis: Anna suffers from agoraphobia so crippling that when a trio of criminals break into her house, she cannot bring herself to flee. But what the intruders don’t realize is that agoraphobia is not her only problem.

Stars: Beth Riesgraf, Martin Starr, Rory Culkin, Leticia Jimenez, Jack Kesy, Joshua Mikel

Director: Adam Schindler

Rated: R

Running Length: 90 minutes

TMMM Score: (7/10)

Where to Watch: Xfinity On Demand

Review: When you go to film festivals, it can be a crapshoot as to what you’re going to get.  I definitely hemmed and hawed about hauling myself out to attend a 10pm showing of Intruders (back when it was called Shut-In) because there was nothing yet on the net about it.  Sometimes if I’m on the fence I’ll do a little recon work to see if it’s something worth the late hours but there was zero, zip, nada information available to help sway me either way.  I went in blind.

And so should you.

This review is going to be brief because to divulge even a teeny bit about this clever thriller above and beyond the synopsis above just wouldn’t be right.  Don’t be put off by the generic title or poster (clearly ripping off The Cabin in the Woods) or the fact it bypassed theaters and moved directly to streaming platforms.  Writers T.J. Cimfel and David White have designed a puzzle box of a movie where nothing is quite as it appears and no one can be trusted.  Even the first major twist manages to keep the film afloat and chugging along until the next curveball Cimfel and White pitch at you arrives.

Director Adam Schindler and cinematographer Eric Leach make good use of the cramped quarters, adding enough claustrophobia to keep the tension high.  The cast is pretty swell too with Beth Riesgraf strongly leading the way as a would-be robbery victim who turns the tables on some no-goodnicks that have broken in to her secluded home looking for cash. The movie has some squirm inducing moments and several sequences that will have you white-knuckling your armrest, but it’s not a messy gore-fest either.

If you’ve seen Don’t Breathe, Intruders may feel pretty familiar but for my money this is the superior film because it has the subtlety and balance Don’t Breathe lacked.  As is almost always the case, the movie begins to run out of steam before the credits roll but it very nearly makes it to the finish line in one piece.  There are a few gaps of logic that don’t quite pan out but on the whole the set-up feels solid.  A good thing to mention is that I think there’s some replay value here in order to afford audiences the opportunity to go back and pick up on what they missed the first time around.