“Because you were home”
Home invasions scare the hell out of me. I’m not talking about the “Desperate Hours” type home invasion, though that would be unsettling, I’m talking about the Charles Manson type home invasion. When the invasion is not simply a means to an end, but a premeditated plan of psychological and physical torture, followed by a ritualistic bloodbath, that’s what scares me.
Very few people in the grand scheme of things are taken hostage in their home as a plan of action. However, the chances of your house being targeted at random are much greater and more terrifying. You can reason with someone who wants something material, you can’t reason with someone that only wants blood. The Strangers tells a story of randomness that chills to the bone.
The film opens with the aftermath of a brutal home invasion. Blood on the walls, bloody kitchen knives, and a shotgun lay about. After a frantic 911 call by a couple of young Mormon boys, we cut to Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman who play Kristin McKay and James Hoyt, sitting in a car. They are dressed formally and Liv is in tears. James grabs a stack of mail from the box and drives to the dark house lit only by porch light. Questions questions questions. We soon learn that James has proposed to Kristin at their friends wedding reception and dressed the parent’s vacation home for a romantic celebration, one problem, she said no.