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The Stepfather (2009)

PG-13 | | Crime, Thriller | 16 October 2009 (USA)
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2:34 | Trailer

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Michael returns home from military school to find his mother happily in love and living with her new boyfriend. As the two men get to know each other, he becomes more and more suspicious of the man who is always there with a helpful hand.

Director:

Nelson McCormick

Writers:

J.S. Cardone (screenplay), Donald E. Westlake (earlier screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
4,281 ( 904)
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dylan Walsh ... David Harris
Sela Ward ... Susan Harding
Penn Badgley ... Michael Harding
Amber Heard ... Kelly Porter
Sherry Stringfield ... Leah
Paige Turco ... Jackie Kerns
Jon Tenney ... Jay
Nancy Linehan Charles ... Mrs. Cutter
Marcuis Harris ... Detective Shay
Braeden Lemasters ... Sean Harding
Deirdre Lovejoy ... Detective Tylar
Skyler Samuels ... Beth Harding
Blue Deckert ... Captain Mackie
Jason Wiles ... Dylan Bennet
Kara Ortiz ... Real Estate Assistant (as Kara Briola)
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Storyline

Michael Harding returns home from military school to find his mother happily in love and living with her new boyfriend, David. As the two men get to know each other, Michael becomes more and more suspicious of the man who is always there with a helpful hand. Is he really the man of her dreams or could David be hiding a dark side? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Just own dies. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence, disturbing images, mature thematic material and brief sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

16 October 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Asesino en casa See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,581,586, 18 October 2009, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$29,062,561, 20 November 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Braeden Lemasters, who played Penn Badgley's younger brother in this movie, played Badgley's younger self in Easy A (2010). See more »

Goofs

At the end of the film, David, now Chris, could not possibly expect his next ruse to work. After all, he left everyone else alive, sans Jay, Mrs. Cutter, and Susan's sister, being they were all about to talk to the police. Jay found out he never went to the University Of Oregon, Mrs. Cutter recognized him from "America's Most Wanted", and Susan's sister was trying to get Jay to do a background check on David. With the remaining family left alive, they could all call "America's Most Wanted" and say that the man living with them was the same man wanted for the previous killing. David, now Chris, does not don a very convincing disguise at the end being his face is the same, he has practically the same hair color, and is still clean shaven. The only difference is he now has longer sideburns. Isn't it possible someone else will recognize him wherever he is now? See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Leah: One female in her late 30s, three minors. Multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Unrated version was released on Region 1 DVD and Region A Blu-ray. See more »

Connections

Features Burnout Paradise (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Say the Same
Written by Douglas Robb, Daniel Estrin and Chris Hesse
Performed by Hoobastank
Courtesy of The Island Def Jam Music Group
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the Better 80s Slasher Remakes
24 November 2009 | by gavin6942See all my reviews

David Harris (Dylan Walsh) has tried to make his family work, but it just wasn't going to happen. So he kills them and starts over in a new town. But it's never that simple, is it? Will this new family work or will the killing have to start all over again? Like many other recent horror films (at least a dozen in the past year), this is a remake. And I loved the original, a powerhouse lead by the undefeatable Terry O'Quinn ("Lost") with 1980s scream queen Jill Schoelen ("Popcorn"). So, needless to say, I liked the original better... but the remake still has something to offer.

Dylan Walsh does a fine job and is more than good enough trying to be creepy and comforting at the same time. Sela Ward, his wife, seemed lacking and was probably the weakest character in the story. The son, Michael (Miley Cyrus' crush, Penn Badgley), was respectable and a strong supporting lead (though not Jill Schoelen). And his girlfriend (Amber Heard)... well, someone needs to tell me why she was always in a bikini or her underwear. That chick needs to eat a sandwich.

For being PG-13, the suspense and thrills were very nice. There was a cat fake-out, and even with one scene cut (it contains a buzzsaw... watch for it on DVD) there was some good, old-fashioned butt-kicking. And, like any modern horror film, they had to take technology into account -- cell phones and the Internet were utilized as part of the plot. I don't happen to think the "America's Most Wanted" sketch looked like David Harris, but that's forgivable.

I don't know what to make of the lesbian subplot... that requires a second viewing or a commentary track to explain.

You must see the original, but this isn't a bad film, either. And if you're younger and maybe not ready for full blown horror (although I don't think any age is too young), this is a good stepping stone. Just turn off your ears before the horrifyingly bad remake of The Turtles' "Happy Together" in the closing credits. I like Filter, but this song fails.


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