I have to say, after seeing a lot of reviews of this movie, I can honestly say that I'm a little perplexed. A lot of them seem to believe this is some kind of Lifetime movie, some call it a typical dumbed-down teen thriller and I saw one reviewer call it a call back to old horror titillation, and I'm surprised and that this film is neither of those. In fact, it's the exact opposite. While some Lifetime thirllers revolve around a woman who is being tortured by her abusive husband, who'm she must try to escape from his evil man-grasp, this film is actually about the older son of the family who tries to prove to his mother that her boyfriend is evil, much to the mother's (understandable) denial. It's not a teen revenge movie about a kid who trying to rail against the new guy in his life who (for some unexplained reason) is evil. It's a film about domestic life and show's you every minute of what's happening with both the son and the stepfather, explaining every happening and soaking up all the tension between them, with the only exposure to his teen life his girlfriend, who serves less as his flat love interest to escape to and more like his straight-man who calls him about on an obsession based on a (though correct) simple distrust. Speaking of which, the reviewer who said this was all about the skin and sex appeal must have been pretty prudish, because I think there's about one scene which focuses about them making out, and it's pretty tame as far as thrillers go. She spends most of movie in her bikini, but it's never the focus of any shot. The character's are an oddity in film today, as they're likable for the most part, and when they aren't, it's understandable. This especially odd for the teen couple, who seem intelligent and more than one note. The stepfather is affable, and pulls off the charming part well for the most part, seeming just like the stepdad you've always wanted. He commits murders throughout the movie, but if they never showed any before the end the only thing you would suspect is that the son is obsessed...except for the blasting soundtrack, which I'll admit eases up toward the middle. There's no campiness or over-the-topness in the movie, and everything is done in a realistic fashion, enough to say that if someone was this smart and charming, this could happen to you. It's a bit anti-climatic at times, but otherwise keep you satisfied through out the film.
This is a thriller/horror movie that keeps up with the times. It's not like horror movies today that seem to forget they're not in the 70's, making advances in technology into huge plot holes or underestimates the intelligence of today's people, whether the characters or the audience. Rather it uses those advances to it's advantage and perfectly measures the logic and understanding of people today, sometimes using it to add relief or tighten suspense. It takes everything you knows about thillers, and while it doesn't turn them all around or revolutionize anything, it at least stays away from the stereotypes or make the standard tropes less tired It's not some kind of Lifetime movie of the week, or MTV Award bait, or even one of those David Loughery faux-thrillers; what this is a tight scripted, well-acted, truly suspenseful film that keeps you guessing, if you can predict what already happens. I recommend a lot of movies, but if your a horror or suspense fan and you've at least okay with the remakes of films like Friday the 13th or My Bloody Valentine, you have to go see this movie! It will amaze you in how they keep everything fresh and tense!