The Horror Honeys: A Bloody Time Suck...

A Bloody Time Suck...

A Supernatural Honey New Release Review by Suzanne

The Stranger (2014)

When it comes to established filmmakers “presenting” films, I usually feel pretty duped. In fact, it’s become a deterrent for me, even if that producer is someone I respect. In an act of desperation, I gave in to a film produced by someone I have a like/disgust relationship with: Eli Roth.

The Stranger, directed by Guillermo Amoedo and produced by Roth and Nicholas Lopez, is a story of a mysterious man, Martin (Cristobal Tapia Montt), who appears one night looking for his wife, Ana. A young boy, Peter (Nicholas Duran), directs him to a local cemetery where Anna is buried. While processing his grief, the man is attacked by a group of local thugs and left for dead, but he’s not dead and Peter tries to help him out. This backfires on Peter and the boys who assaulted Martin take their revenge out on him, but Martin, who has made a miraculous recovery, sets the ringleader, Caleb (Ariel Levy), on fire. This act sets in motion a chain of events that puts everyone in this small town in danger.

The real infection? Hipster beards.
We find out via flashbacks that Martin and his deceased wife were “infected.” Vampirism is never mentioned, but it’s obvious. They don’t have fangs or bite necks, but they do drink blood, are immortal, their blood turns people, and they die in sunlight. I’m not a big fan of the flashback unless it helps tell the story. Unfortunately, while it does explain how Martin and Ana became separated, it never explains how they became infected.

Aside from some interesting and well-done special effects, there isn’t much to love. Amoedo attempts to re-invent the modern day vampire wheel, but is unsuccessful, with a slow story, bad script, and terrible acting. This is Amoedo’s first English language film and is supposed to take place in a small town in either America or Canada (that’s never quite clear), but it was filmed in Chile, which is pretty evident. 

A beard would clear that right up.
There isn’t a single likable or sympathetic character in the bunch. It actually seems that the entire town is full of corrupt, violent, soul suckers. 

Shaving accident, huh? That's why beards are better, friend.
Lorenza Izzo, who plays Ana, is an actress with some skill, but only appears in about 5 minutes of the film. Izzo also happens to be Eli Roth’s wife. I’m not sure if she appears as a favor to the director or if the director hired her so Roth would produce. She has appeared in all of Roth’s projects since Aftershock. I see a Rob Zombie thing happening here.

The Stranger is an interesting premise not fully realized. It feels much longer than its 93 minutes because of slow pacing and giant plot holes. It’s murky and muddied, rather than dark and disturbing, which it had the potential to be. It’s just not worth the time.

Supernatural Honey Rating: 1.5 blood-sucking beards out of 5

The Stranger is available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Google Play, & Limited Theater Release/VOD

Will you be watching The Stranger?
Tell me why on Twitter: @suzebee04