|Index||6 reviews in total|
Here's a strange little thriller that fluctuates all over the place in a
disjointed but intriguing way. Harry Hamlin (star of the upcoming "Movie
Stars" TV series) plays Jack Beldon, a drifter who insinuates himself into
widowed (and relocated) mom's family. Her 13-year-old son (Trevor Blumas)
has strong reservations about opening their home to a "stranger," and these
feelings are compounded after a local woman is found strangled in her home
and the boy detective uncovers dark secrets about Mr. Hamlin's past and...
Toss Graham Greene ("Dances With Wolves") into the stew as a babbling vagrant known as "The Creeper" and the interest level rises. Is Jack a ladykiller or has the "harmless" Creeper gone off the deep end? "Stranger in Town" keeps you guessing 'til the bitter end. Not Hitchcock, but not bad either
First of all, Graham Greene, a terrific actor, is totally wasted in this movie. His part is nothing more that someone creeping around in the dark, and could have been played by any no name. This is the type of film that actually makes the audience feel foolish for being lead along a path to nowhere. The kids appear smarter than the cops, the two prime murder suspects have no motive for the killing, and then out of nowhere everything we are lead to believe is turned upside down, just so the script can appear to be clever. I absolutely hated this movie for all of the above reasons, and it should definitely be avoided, unless you want to spend 95 minutes being lead down the same ridiculous path. - MERK
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If this is the best that the film industry of Canada can do, Hollywood
is in no danger.
I gave this made for TV effort a 3 out of 10 only because it was a mild OK effort that was a lot like the Disney films about the adventures of a young teen boy. At least in Canada film-making, they had this thirteen year old's friend a sister, I believe, and not the obligatory thirteen year old's girl friend that the recent year's Disney films mandate, I guess to keep girl's interest as viewers. Give girls the credit, that is not necessary.
It was the really stupid ending that made all the people that I watched it with laugh. I will not commit a spoiler here, suffice to ask why Harry was standing were he was .. and just in time? But the whole ending was a great big laugh, and was so bad that I considered a 1 rating. Maybe we should block our Northern Border, not to keep illegals out, but just movies.
(Some Spoilers) The movie "Stranger in Town" starts off with a music
score almost identical to the Alrfred Hitchcock 1960 shocker "Psycho"
as we see Katherine, Rebecca Jenkins, and her two children Aaron and
Kim,Travor Blumas & Carly McKillip,driving out of the big and crime
ridden city of Chicago to the small peaceful Town of Elm Creek.
Widowed and trying to give her two young children a safe and healthy environment Katherine had no idea what she and the town of Elm Creek were in for during the course of the film. This local homeless man Eddie Lester,Graham Green,has been a more or less pain in the neck for the towns residents but soon after Kathrine and her kids moved in one of the people in Elm Creek Pamala Martin, Lisa Pollock, was found strangled and Eddie turned out to be the prime suspect.
You can see right away that Eddie, even though he's a bit weird, is in no way a murderer and later when he was chased by a bunch of teenagers through his home, the town junkyard,he even helps young Aaron, after he fell on his head running away from Eddie, by dressing his wounds. The local police also suspect Eddie with the murder of Pamala and that leads to Eddie's death as he's crushed to death, again at the junkyard in an abandoned car, trying to run away from the police who wanted to question him. It later turns out that it was proved by the police that Eddie was innocent of Pamala's murder but that came too late to save him.
The suspicion to who killed Pamala now shifts to stranger and handyman the secretive and scuzzy looking Jack Beldon, Harry Hamlin. Jack somewhat of a weirdo himself seems to have a sixth sense when it comes to being the wrong man at the wrong place at the wrong time for those who happen to be there.
Getting very friendly with Katherine to the point where he asks her to marry him, and she accepts, makes young Aaron very uneasy about this creepy looking guy ending up being his step-father and possibly doing is mom in to get a hold of her house. Aaron's fears are not unfounded as he looked up back issues of the local newspapers at the town library and saw an article about Jack Boldon, called Jack Lowe in the story, being accused of murdering his wife to get his hands on her estate.
Even the police headed by Chief Waller, Shaun Johnstone, feel that it was Jack who murdered Palama as well as his wife, even though there wasn't enough proof to arrest him, and Jack himself doesn't help his cause that much by his unruly and even violent actions.
The film goes around in circles never really making the point to why Pamala was murdered and who did it until it's revealed by Chief Waller,in a talk with Aaron, that Pam recently bought a strip on land outside of town. It turned out that land was used by drug runners as an airfield to make their "drops" to the drug pushers all over the state who gathered there. It was Pam getting the "dope" on the dope pushers and with her about to go with that evidence to the police, as well as FBI and DEA, that lead someone in town to shut her up for good. It now seems that the person who murdered her was in some way involved with the Elm Creek police department.
Not that persuasive of a movie in it's story with the usually sharp looking and handsome Harry Hamlin playing a lowlife type of guy who looked like he just escaped from a chain gang in rural Georiga. There's a really good ending sequence with Aaron being chased by the killer, you'll never guess who, through the junkyard and having***MAJOR SPOILER***Jack come to his rescue.
The most interesting thing that I found in the movie was how Jack could keep his t-shirt so clean, in fact almost spotless, even when he was doing hard dirty and greasy work in and around Katherine's house?
First let me start off by stating that I did watch the entire film. Don't know how I did it but Had to see how this film would end. The acting in this film was atrocious and difficukt to watch.I am always confused how the directors/producers of these types of films can look at this finished product and feel comfortable releasing it and attaching there names to it. That is career suicide. The one positive is at least the film had a twist to it which did make me continue to watch. But other than that this was a terrible film. I give it a 2/10. Not sure how the one user gave it a 7/10 as there is no way you could possibly enjoy this garbage
This is a weird little number. It certainly is at least somewhat different from the typical "is this guy the psycho or not" thriller, but it's definitely a confused movie. About as much as, if not more than, Greene's character. The plot isn't bad, and develops reasonably. In spite of there not really being *that* many separate threads to it, they seem incapable of keeping them from going all over the place. I personally found the "smart beyond his years" kid irritating, but I suppose not everyone would, seeing as how the type keeps appearing in flicks. The acting varies... hey, the children aren't actually the worst, that's nice. Some of the dialog tries to be sharp and clever, and falls flat. The music is strong, early on, later it gets... interesting. There are gaps in logic in this. Pacing is uneven. This can be relatively exciting and entertaining at best. There is little to no language. This has no sexuality. The violence is mild. A PG-13 or so rating fits. There is disturbing content in this, mostly in a few of the situations. I recommend this to the biggest fans of Hamlin and/or this type of film. 5/10
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