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Movie ReviewsThe Intruder – Not Quite Intruding The “So Bad It’s Good” Genre

Keith NoakesMay 4, 201935/100
Starring
Michael Ealy, Megan Good, Dennis Quaid
Writer
David Loughery
Director
Deon Taylor
Rating
14A (Canada), PG-13 (United States)
Running Time
102 minutes
Release Date
May 3rd, 2019
Overall Score
Rating Summary
The Intruder is a dull and badly-written mess of a thriller that could never seem to get off the ground. Instead of fully-embracing its campy premise, the film is a frustrating watch that nealy misses out as a "so bad that it's good" film.

Sometimes there are films that you can pretty much figure out based on the title alone and you wouldn’t be wrong more often than not. The Intruder is one of those films. Despite these hurdles, some of these films still manage to be entertaining. However, this was not the case this time around as instead of taking what we more or less already know in interesting directions, the film does the opposite by throwing these conventions in a badly-written mess that never could get off the ground. It tries to be too many things, going in too many directions, while it would be better served by picking one and running with it.

The trailers gave off more of a campy and over-the-top vibe but the film was nowhere near that and was more in favor of a story of a successful young married couple named Scott (Ealy) and Annie Russell (Good) who would purchase a seemingly perfect country house in Nappa Valley from an owner named Charlie Peck (Quaid) who would be unwilling to give it up. On one side, the married couple story was incredibly dull as their experience with this new house caused friction within their relationship all while Peck, who had an unexplained connection to the house, was unwilling to let it go. Though the characters may have been thinly written, Peck’s story was more compelling as it was easier to somewhat relate to that character in comparison which isn’t saying much.

The main problem with The Intruder was its atrocious writing. Characters and mediocre dialog aside, absolutely nothing about this should come as much of a surprise to anyone who has ever watched any film before. Its derivative and highly-predictable nature make it a frustrating chore to watch throughout. With a plot driven by stupid character decisions, it will surely make the film feel longer. The plot would drag as it hit every cliche as it became increasingly ridiculous in addition to being stupid as the film went on. Ridiculousness can be fine as long as it possesses a shred of believability but this would go out the window here in a ridiculous climax.

Despite the bad writing and cliched characters, the acting was the best part of the film. Everyone was okay but it was just hard to care about any of the characters. Ealy was okay as Scott Russell though there was absolutely nothing to his character. The same was the case with Good as the terribly-written Annie Russell who would also be handcuffed with Ealy. Neither actor go to do all that much which was baffling since they had the bulk of the screen time. The only noteworthy performance here was Quaid as Peck. He absolutely let loose here in a performance that would be a little too over-the-top at times, however, still managed to be somewhat entertaining and whose many facial expressions will surely give birth to many memes and gifs. It was just a shame that he wasn’t given as much of a chance as the others as his characters was much more interesting than the other two.

At the end of the day, The Intruder is not quite a “so bad that it’s good” film and won’t be intruding on any best of lists anytime soon.

*still courtesy of Sony Pictures*


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