Scream Factory and IFC Midnight partner up again to bring us an Eli Roth presentation from the land of Chile. "The Stranger" is the sort of movie independent film festivals were created for. It's a unique little gem that evokes more heartfelt emotions than what you would expect from what appears to be a horror thriller at first glance.
In "The Stranger," a mysterious man (Cristobal Tapia-Montt) arrives seeking to kill his wife Ana (Lorenza Izzo) who suffers from a very dangerous disease that makes her as addicted to human blood as he is. But when he discovers that Ana has been dead for a couple of years, Martin decides to commit suicide to definitively eradicate this peculiar disease which imbues his blood with healing powers. Before he can do it, however, Martin is brutally attacked by three local thugs, led by Caleb, the son of a corrupt police lieutenant. The incident suddenly initiates a chain-reaction that plunges the community into a bloodbath.
Although it's not rated, I would give "The Stranger" an R. It contains violence and gore, profanity, alcohol and drug use, and frightening and intense scenes. What we don't find surprisingly is any nudity or sexual situations. This is almost an impossibility in horror movies these days but a welcome change.
Scream Factory gives fans of independent horror films a few treats on the Blu-ray version of "The Stranger." A short film entitled "The Fourth Horseman" is found. The filmmakers headline the featurette "Welcome to Chilewood." Theatrical trailers for both the U.S. and Chile are accompanied by a still gallery to round out the bonus material.
"The Stranger" is a lot more subtle and sophisticated than what we've come to expect from Producer Eli Roth. As strange as it sounds, the film is a sentimental horror story of love, honor, and family ties. Top it all off with a healthy dose of bloody vengeance and you've got the makings of a gory little thriller. You definitely won't be able to say it's the typical take on the supernatural creatures at the core of the tale.
"The Stranger" is available now on Blu-ray, DVD, and as a Digital Download.