Todd Gaines’s review published on Letterboxd:
Is more of a good thing, always a good thing? This is the question you will answer for yourselves as you watch the sequel to The Strangers. Dollface, Pin-Up Girl and Man in the Mask are all back, and they’re all front and center. They’re not hiding in the bushes, ringing doorbells, knocking on doors and making strange noises. Naw, they’re chasing a family around in a trailer park that’s best described as: Camp Crystal Lake the Trailer Park from Hell edition.
There’s a lot of jump scares. In fact, probably too many. However, this is a highly entertaining survive the night / run for your fuckin’ lives feature film. I like the cast. Martin Henderson and Christina Hendricks make great “everyparent” parents. I sometimes like the Brother / Sister dynamic relationship over a dating couple and we get this with the kids, Bailee Madison and Lewis Pullman. There isn’t an actor that shines above the rest, but together, the family unit is believable in their love for each other and their desire to survive.
That music. A sometimes synth score that sounds a lot like Halloween, mixed in with ‘80s power ballads from Air Supply and Bonnie Tyler. I like the combo, and it makes some of the scenes, even more memorable.
Almost the entire runtime is spent as Family Unit vs Strangers. We don’t get the dread like in the original, but we get a Cat and Mouse chase that should satisfy fans of the genre. Definitely, horror on a budget.
Don’t expect a retelling of the original. Take what you are given and enjoy the show. I love how they say it is based on a true story. Guess what? The stories are hardly ever actually based on true stories. They say this, to get you to believe the unbelievable. It is great tool to use in films like this. I did notice some cool homage to TCM, and I’m sure the director, borrowed from other iconic films as well. This sequel is easier more fun than the original. Probably, not as scary, but still a worthy watch.