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When Strangers Appear

A stranger finds a deserted restaurant owned by Beth. He is wounded, famished and exhausted. He hides before three newcomers notice his presence. Beth is confused but tries not to show it until she finds out the truth. Once the trio leaves, she asks to be enlightened. Jack’s gunshot wound speaks for itself. They shot at him and are looking to finish him off. She brings him to a trusted surgeon for healing.

The doctor is found dead and Jack is nowhere to be found. Beth would like discuss the matter with the three surfers that she can’t stop seeing everywhere but something just doesn’t seem right. Is Jack a legitimate fugitive? A robber caught in the act that offended the wrong clan? One thing is certain, if the culprits find out what she knows, she’s as good as dead.





When Strangers Appear distinguishes itself by turning a simple event into something confusing. The situation is only seen through Beth’s eyes and she doesn’t know who to trust. Certain suspects talk too much, others lie. The most fascinating part is that even though the intrigue becomes chaos (filling our minds with more questions than answers), it never sacrifices reality to impress the public. Furthermore, by the end of the film, most of your questions will have been answered.

If I must mention a negative aspect, I would elect the character development as the leader. Because everyone is a suspect, our partial knowledge of the characters is defined by the illusions they project. The essence of the film surrounds the mystery concerning them and, consequently, it would have been impossible to avoid. Isolating Beth from the list of possible culprits or accomplices would have been the perfect initiative. Sadly, even this is a possibility. Still, the quality of the acting is not diminished. They are natural and know how to go from one personality to the other or from one facial expression to the next in a matter of seconds.

This film will keep you on the edge of your seat for its duration. The only time it strays away from the main development is to introduce two new suspects but it doesn’t get caught up in unimportant details. It is an excellent thriller that keeps giving you the impression of being only a few millimeters away from the answer but keeps pushing it away to make you languish.

Final Thoughts

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Memorables aspects

Memorables characters
- Beth (Radha Mitchell)
- Jack (Barry Watson)

Released in: 2001

Movie type: Horror - Thriller

Films in similar category:
Devil in the Flesh 2
Joy Ride
Devil's Prey

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( 2004-02-04 )  

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