Probably no one really knows this about me (well, one person does), but I have an almost paralyzing fear of masks. I don't care what kind of masks they are, I hate them. Santa Claus maks, president masks, anonymous glassy-faced masks, the mask the guy in Halloween wears, whatever. I don't like it. The surest way to freak me out (and get me to possibly hate you) is to stare at me while you're wearing a mask. I have somewhat of a history with masks freaking me out in my life that I'm not going to detail here, but suffice to say, some of my most impressionable moments of being scared out of my mind in childhood involved masks. Both benign and werewolf.
So, while I don't care for Liv Tyler, and I have no idea who Scott Speedman is, but people seem to hate him, and I'm sure it sucks, the trailer for The Strangers really terrifies me. Naturally, I just assumed it was a Funny Games ripoff (and dear god, the only movie I've ever hated more than Funny Games is fucking Salo. Pasolini deserved to be murdered after making that soul-crushing journey to hell). Next on the list would be any Lars von Trier film. That man's not even human.
But I digress. I made the Funny Games - Strangers parallel immediately, but it seems there are some seasoned horror buffs that didn't really pick up on it. But since no one's seen the film, there seems to be some debate as to whether or not it is actually a ripoff of Funny Games, or is just being marketed that way. And while I did despise every moment of Funny Games (well, in all fairness, I didn't finish it; when they blast the little kid's brains all over the wall in front of his mother, I'd had enough), I can appreciate the point it's making. Too bad it's such a condescending, elitist and hypocritical point, but nevertheless, I think it's smart.
But the one thing The Strangers has going for it, for me, is the masks. I have to admit, though I know it will be total tripe, I'll probably see it. Any movie that can genuinely freak me out, I appreciate. And sometimes a silly mask is all it takes.
(As a sidenote, I'm also very excited about Mamma Mia. I can't help it; it looks fun.)