Lawrence Bender and Sam Raimi
Dan Hicks, David Byrnes, Elizabeth Cox and Renée Estevez
Beyond Infinity, Phantom Productions and Empire Pictures
Intruder is a generic eighties slasher movie that that features some pretty decent gore. It also has appearances by The Raimi Brothers and Bruce Campbell. They aren’t featured but their inclusion, along with the gore, helped make this movie a cult feature. I hadn’t heard of this movie before and came across it after watching a review by Pop Culture Beast on YouTube. It looked really interesting and had some brutal kills. I was in.
The overnight crew at a supermarket is restocking the shelves for the following business day. They’re a complacent crew of stoned twenty-somethings. That make the movie feel like it’s kind of Clerks. meets Michael Myers. The group find out that their store is being sold and they might be out of a job. Plus, a crazed ex-boyfriend of one of the employees is skulking around outside and a murderer seems to be picking everyone off one-by-one. Who’s gonna survive!?
Intruder features tv quality performances by Elizabeth Cox, Renée Estevez, Dan Hicks, David Byrnes, Sam Raimi, Billy Marti and Ted Raimi. It also had Lawrence Bender and Bruce Campbell in cameo roles as cops. I like to think that Campbell was extending his role from Maniac Cop into this picture. Most everyone in this movie would go on too much brighter things.
I really appreciate the brutal nature of the murders in the film. The bandsaw scene is one that particularly sticks with me. It’s grody, visceral and hard to watch. Unfortunately, the plot doesn’t hold up as well as the actual murders do. It starts to fall a bit flat. That and the fact that the trailers gave away the killer. So, the mystique was completely lost upon my viewing. The movie has decent shots for being modestly funded. Scott Spiegel does a lot of experimental shooting here with this early release. Some stuff works. Other stuff just comes off too cheap and poorly executed. Sometimes shots try to be clever but they end up being a bit too obvious. Others are too artsy. It was filmed in an actual Supermarket after hours.
The film is made by Phantom Productions who brought us such time-honored classics as Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death, Dr. Alien and this feature. I will definitely have to watch some of these movies. They look like garbage. Absolute trash, but that’s right up my alley.
Intruder is a slasher. Definitely a movie following the trend set in the decade before it. The killings are pretty brutal but with a diminished quality. It would definitely be a bit too much for some younger teens but kids shouldn’t watch it. This movie was actually a fun look at since I work in retail. The twenty-somethings that reluctantly worked there were appropriately frustrating. However, I just couldn’t shake how generic and unenthusiastic everything felt. Some parts were just so agonizingly mediocre. It got annoying. But when it wanted to turn up the heat it could. I would suggest checking out other slashers from the time that kept that realistic angle. Movies like Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer and Maniac come to mind right away. Unfortunately it also reminds me of schlocky slashers like Popcorn and Slumber Party Massacre.