The Lurker (2020) – movie review

The Lurker. Image credit: Courtesy of The Movie Database The Lurker. Image credit: Courtesy of The Movie Database

Is there anything more promising-sounding than a low-budget slasher flick starring Scout Taylor-Compton (born in 1989) as a high-schooler? Or anything more exciting than a horror film directed by a guy whose only previous credit on IMDb is for a movie nobody has ever seen or rated? What about the 3.5 rating on IMDb out of 181 user ratings?

All jokes aside, the only reason I watched The Lurker, directed by Eric Liberacki and starring Scout Taylor-Compton, is that I have no intentions to pay to see Fantasy Island in theatres nor I want to watch Brahms: The Boy II. Since no other horror movie worth of note has been released in the past few days that I hadn’t covered yet, I decided to give The Lurker a go, despite having colossally low expectations.

Continue reading and check my final grade below… 

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My review is also available on IMDb – The Lurker (2019)

Check out the official list of 2020 horror films I’ve watched


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The Lurker – “plot” and WTF choices

The Lurker follows a group of theatre students, all of them in high-school, celebrating their final show. Some of them, though, begin to slowly disappear one at a time and the others must find out who’s responsible for their deaths as well as trying to survive.

Slasher flicks really don’t need to be complicated or particularly well-made to be enjoyable, in my opinion. However, The Lurker manages to reach new lows even for such a lowbrow subgenre. The most questionable directorial or casting-related choice is the one about the actors in the movie: aside from Taylor-Compton, who was 30 when they filmed The Lurker, every other actor is also way older than the character they’re supposed to play. On top of that, the movie is so poorly lit that it’s nearly impossible to see what’s going on, even with a good setting. The same could be said about sound mixing, which was obviously handled by some amateur, as highs and lows are completely unbalanced throughout the movie.

Low budget is not an excuse

There’s plenty of good or even great indie horror movies that benefitted from very little budgets, which more often than not depends on the director’s understanding of budget restraints, importance of script and fundamental role of visuals (even if you don’t have high production values, you can make your movie look good through camera-work, cinematography and shot composition). Unfortunately, all these elements are missing from The Lurker, which seems to be using its constraints as an excuse for being a very poorly-made flick.

Due to the lack of character development and acting abilities, as well as the amateur technical aspects of the movie, The Lurker comes off as a very dull, unforgivably slow-moving watching experience. It, also, fails almost completely as a slasher, as the killings constantly happen off-screen… and even when they do happen onscreen, it’s so damn dark you can’t see anything!

Has The Lurker got redeeming aspects?

Yes, it does. Unfortunately, it’s nothing major, though: on a filmmaking level The Lurker is almost impressive as it doesn’t feature a single element of quality. However, it does pull off a couple of staples within the slasher subgenre, such as the whodunnit aspect and the red herrings, which are rather clever and, also, necessary to make the mystery a tad more interesting. Finally, the killer’s mask has a good design and it would be rather intimidating if it was used in a better context.

These redeeming aspects, however, are not enough to justify a recommendation for The Lurker, which is simply a bad movie 99% of you won’t enjoy. If you like modern slasher flicks, check the links below to get a copy of some good ones!

Rating 2

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