July 9th, 2013: He Knows You’re Alone

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Cast and Crew:  James Rebhorn, Paul Gleason, Dana Barron

What It’s About:  Amy Jensen (Caitlin O’Heaney) is about to get married, and intends to spend the weekend before the wedding in a low-key celebration with her friends while her fiancé is away on a bachelor weekend.  There’s just one problem:  a bride killer (Tom Rolf) has arrived in town.  Can the detective obsessed with finding the murderer (Lewis Arlt) figure out the killer’s target before it’s too late?

Why Watch it Today?: Tom Hanks, who turns 57 today, debuted in today’s film.  Reportedly  the script killed off Hanks’ psych major/jogger, but his charismatic performance won over the director and they cut his death scene.  Hanks is likable enough, but no more so than O’Heaney and Don Scardino (playing Amy’s ex and love interest Marvin the Mortician) the rare love interests in a slasher film that the audience roots for, and in fact the supporting cast are quite likable in a genre known for its irritating, cardboard characters.  This adds novelty to a film that is one of the most shameless Halloween knock-offs in an era of shameless Halloween cash-ins.  Just like HalloweenHe Knows You’re Alone features a killer on the loose stalking a threesome of unsuspecting girls and the younger charge of the lead while  an obsessed authority figure stalking him in turn.  The electronic soundtrack apes Carpenter’s and the film even “quotes” specific shots, but the characters and the suspense and occasional inventiveness the film displays makes this a decent choice for fans of the genre.  One warning-the movie does not play fair with those likable characters, with a twist ending that probably should have been left on the cutting room floor.

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