Intruder (Movie Review)

InrtuderComing Friday, June 24th by IFC Midnight, Intruder is (as the title suggests) a home invasion thriller that depicts one woman’s unsettling weekend home alone, written and directed by Travis Zarwiny. Starring Louise Linton as Elizabeth, a young cellist in the Portland Oregon Symphony, decides to escape the stresses of her life by retreating to the solitude and safety of her own home. However the dangers of the storm outside are nothing compared to what Elizabeth finds inside the comfort of her apartment.

Intruder Film

The Film:

The film begins with cliché foreshadowing of the horrors to come for the main character, Elizabeth. Emily is home alone during a stormy evening when suddenly the lights go out and she is murdered by an intruder in her home. Down to the names, this film is riddled with clunky clichés and unoriginal ideas.  

Like the chicken or the egg, it is hard to distinguish which attributed to the ultimate demise of this film first, the acting or the script. The main actress Louise Linton gives an incredibly flat performance. Her meek and mild demeanour gives little for the audience to connect to. At times her line delivery even feels forced, particularly when she finds her boyfriend taking a shower in her home. The line “I’m almost happy to see you” comes across more harsh than it should and a little weird. Honestly, who else would you hope was in your shower when you’re young and living alone?

Surprisingly enough, music artist Moby has a small role in the film as Elizabeth’s conductor, Vincent. Though his character is meant to be intimidating his performance comes across weird and forgetful, as do all the red herring male actors in the film. Most off putting about the male characters were their obvious stereotypes. The film title could have been “Creeper No Creeping” and it would have the same effect.

Overall the film adds nothing new to the home-invasion genre. What should be disturbing and horrifying comes across as old hat and repetitive. In particular, the scene where the intruder first enters Elizabeth’s home undetected is completely unsuccessful. A number of times the intruder starred, caressed, and even kissed Elizabeth’s mouth while she slept. She even wakes up to get a glass of water and moments after falling back to sleep the intruder again touches her face. Not once does Elizabeth move or wake with uneasy feelings. I call shenanigans, especially the second time around she should have woken up at some point knowing something was not quite right. Elizabeth’s lack of panic and paranoia is reflective of the audience’s lack of care for her wellbeing. One would think if something was important enough to be repeated in a film then something new would be learned however that audience gains nothing.  In my opinion, this movie is completely unsuccessful in its attempt to disturb the audience primarily because that audience has seen these tactics before. Some guy dressed in hooded clothing eating all the dairy products in the fridge and peeing in the sink is not thrilling, it’s just rude.

Technical difficulties:

Although part of the fun in a thriller is to have the minds of the audience racing with questions and uncertainty, it is not fun to guess what decade the film takes place in for the first 50 minutes. Two thirds of the film went by before I got an accurate reading on the film’s time frame. Throughout the film I assumed the story took place in the mid-late 90’s judging by the electronics in Elizabeth’s house. In her apartment there is a boxy, square TV, a landline with answering machine, and no computer or cell phone to be found. It is finally revealed that Elizabeth is simply, a hipster type of girl and prefers not to be up to date with the latest tech after Justin pulls out his cell phone and begins texting. I can only assume the point of this was to make Elizabeth seem enduring somehow to the audience; or simply a writer’s convenience for Elizabeth to never have a cell phone at the very moment she needs one; either way it never pays off. The information arrives too late for the audience to incorporate it in their judgements of Elizabeth and the convenience is never used to further the plot. Ironically it’s Justin’s cell phone that finally tips her off that something is wrong near the end of the film.   


Sadly, the only thing intrusive about Intruder is the obnoxious score. The film gives a lackluster presentation in its numerous cliché attempts to create suspense and belief. Simply put, this film is dull.  



1 Response to “Intruder (Movie Review)”

  1. Liam

    Please don’t waste an hour in a half of your life seeing this movie. It was beyond horrible. The acting sucked so badly. One minute Louise Linton had a bit of a British accent and the next she was speaking in an american accent. Besides her horrible acting, the story line was bad. BAD BAD BAD