Review by Jude Felton
A young couple comes under siege whilst at home in their remote house. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? In terms of modern cinema, it could very well be the synopsis for The Strangers or Ils (Them), and in actual fact bares more than a passing resemblance to the latter. Thankfully, there’s more to it than that, although to reveal too much would really spoil the film’s overall effect.
Static focuses on Jonathan and Addie Dade, a young married couple who are trying to come to terms with the death of their 3 year old son. As you might imagine, it’s not an easy process; Jonathan, an author, immerses himself into finishing off his latest novel, whilst Addie finds solace in pills and wine.
One night they are paid a visit by a stranded motorist, who claims that she came under siege by hooded thugs. The couple reluctantly decides to take her in, and from this point on the nightmare begins, as the film heads into home invasion territory.
Now, I will admit to not knowing a whole lot about Static, before watching it, aside from knowing it starred Milo Ventimiglia and Sara Paxton. This probably worked to my benefit, even though I had worked out the entire plot within about five minutes of the film starting. That’s not to say that the filmmakers give too much away, but it is there to work out if you pay attention.
The film actually starts off at a fairly pedestrian pace, and doesn’t really kick into high gear until around the half hour mark. This wasn’t a problem for me though, as it gave the film a chance to really explore to the two leads, and in turn delve into their grief. When it does get going though, it actually turns into a quite tense and atmospheric movie. I didn’t watch it in 3D, but I’m not sure quite how much a third dimension would add to an already solid movie.
Where the film failed, for me, was that it bore too much of a similar story to the aforementioned Ils (Them). Apart from some major plot points, the meat and bones of the story, and execution, were dead ringers. Hell, there were even scenes that could have been taken from the superior French chiller.
So, aside from the similarities to Them, Static was actually a really enjoyable film. The pace might be a little too slow for some, especially at the beginning, but overall I found myself really enjoying the structure and execution. The cast were all on point, the atmosphere was spot on, and even the color palette of the film was pitch perfect.
Included on this release were 3D and 2D Blu-ray versions, and a DVD copy, and in terms of extras there’s an audio commentary from the writers, producers and editors.
Overall, I’d recommend Static to fans of the home invasion sub-genre, but don’t go in expecting a ton of gore, because you won’t get it, and also genre fans that want to check out a good solid film that might have bypassed their movie-viewing radar. Static is definitely worth a viewing.
Static is available on 3-D Blu-ray Combo Pack now from New Video Group.