[Sela Ward, Dylan Walsh, Penn Badgley]
Have you ever gone to the movies and wondered if you were in the right theatre? When I went inside theatre number 7, I thought maybe I was going to see the "Sex in the City" movie. It was 85% women ranging from mid-teens to their 40s. I verified my ticket stub, then settled in my usual spot in a seat behind the railing so I could put my feet up.
Rebooting and updating the 1987 movie (and its 2 sequels), Dylan Walsh stars as David Harris, a man we know from the start as the killer of divorced and widowed women and their children. As he plots another attempt to create the perfect family, he approaches and is soon engaged to Sela Ward with her young daughter and two sons. The older son, Michael, played by Penn Badgley, is just back from military school and has missed both his mother's divorce and her new engagement to David. Dealing with the situation Michael is mistrustful and resentful, leading him to snoop into David's reluctant past.
A departure from his "Nip/Tuck" Dr. Sean McNamara, Dylan Walsh plays it perfect as the sociopath When he smiles, the charms comes right through. When he isn't smiling, you can see his family man veneer fall away immediately.
"The Stepfather" is a decent suspense drama, reminding me of the recent "Disturbia" is structure if not style. In both movies, we know the antagonist's motives and goals, but just not how the son can possibly unravel and prove in fact that evil is dating his mother. While "Disturbia" updated a classic premise of physical limitations from Hitchcock's "Rear Window", "The Stepfather" relies on more recent cinema source material from the 80s. Even though the stranger is the man that would be your new father, do we really find him as scary as he once was 30 years ago? Even though he lives under your roof, the mistrust he breeds already puts the household on edge, and ultimately prepared for him.
I guess the only question is about the budget of the movie, because Amber Heard's character has 4 bikinis in the movie, and 3 of them are different colors with white polka-dots. Did they buy them in bulk to save money?
Worth: Matinee and a Netflix