The Strangers: Prey at Night ★★★★

Well, hell. This started out decently well but by the time the credits rolled I was more or less enamored.

A family of four heading out for a weekend in a trailer park are terrorized by the three masked strangers.

There is one significant difference between this and the original. If the original film was heavily based on a 70's vibe with home invasion thrillers, this is a full blown 80's style slasher film. The opening credits are not subtle, it's a complete Stephen King/Stranger Things font, red swirling fountain thing, with music that seems lifted straight out of an early 80's Carpenter film (my initial reaction was "Oh no, this shit again..").

Fortunately the film lives up to its stylish aspirations, there is a little bit of fumbling foreplay but before long the chase begins and then it's a non-stop cat and mouse bloodbath to the very end. More blood, more victims, a significantly faster pace and a lot more throbbing music and 80's era power pop ballads. The first film was more about subtleties and atmosphere, this one tells you to leave your realistic aspirations at the door, because it is going full blown "invulnerable boogeyman chasing teens" style. It was delightfully refreshening to see a film that doesn't take itself so painfully seriously, after two dozen abysmal teenage popcorn flicks about ghosts and ouija boards and murderous social networks.

Prey At Night is not as "fine art" a film as its predecessor but I ultimately found it more rewarding, it relaxed and allowed itself to have some 80's style fun, and there are plenty of shots both violent and stylish at the same time - let's just say I will never quite think of Bonnie Tyler the same way ever again. If like me you're a rabid fan of that particular era of horror films, especially involving masked lunatics, you are in for a delicious treat. A clichéd and pretty impersonal treat but a delightful one nevertheless, and one that feels like a vitamin injection into my of late calloused horror loving heart.