Well, this is fuckin' goofy. The Strangers, which is purportedly "inspired by true events," follows what happens when a blandly attractive couple, Kristen and James, decide to spend a night at a rural summer home. Kristen and James are played, with equal blandness and attractiveness, by Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman; they're also all pissy at each other, since Kristen has turned down James' marriage proposal.
But such petty squabbles are forgotten when Kristen and James' night is interrupted by three kids wearing (of course) creepy masks. These little rascals promptly start messing with our protagonists—banging on doors, rapping on windows, cutting phone lines, sneaking into the house, etc. Occasionally, it's ominous, but it's never scary—actually, it's more cute than anything else, since one suspects that these country kids just don't have anything better to do than screw around with pretty city folk.
There's another problem, too: What does Liv Tyler weigh? 110? 120? Whatever—if, for five minutes, she'd stop whimpering from the sheer terror of getting doorbell ditched, I'm pretty sure even she could smack the smarmy little grins off these little shits' faces. (Speedman—an action hero from the Underworld flicks—somehow does even more shameless cowering than Tyler, so maybe it's a good thing she told him to keep the ring.) Rather than doing anything interesting, Kristen and James spend the night either trembling in closets or doing the various suicidal things people in horror movies do. ("You stay here alone! I'm going to run off through those dark woods into that abandoned barn!")
As The Strangers' antagonists lurk in the shadows, staying just out focus and wheezing through their cheesy masks (I think the really wheezy one might have asthma, actually, which makes him even more adorable), things get increasingly repetitive, even though the film clocks in at a mere 80 minutes. Eventually, though, the night wears on, some knives come out, and things get predictably bloody—but even then, it's impossible to be all that scared whenever you look at The Strangers' villains. I mean, they are so staying out past curfew! I bet a couple of masked somebodies are going to be spending some serious time in time-out once they get home!