Movie Review: The Visitor

October 6, 2022

Written by Joseph Perry

Joseph Perry is the Film Festival Editor for Horror Fuel; all film festival related queries and announcements should be sent to him at [email protected] He is a contributing writer for the "Phantom of the Movies VideoScope" and “Drive-In Asylum” print magazines and the websites Gruesome Magazine, Diabolique Magazine, The Scariest Things, B&S About Movies, and When It Was Cool. He is a co-host of the "Uphill Both Ways" pop culture nostalgia podcast and also writes for its website. Joseph occasionally proudly co-writes articles with his son Cohen Perry, who is a film critic in his own right. A former northern Californian and Oregonian, Joseph has been teaching, writing, and living in South Korea since 2008.

I’m not the type of viewer who tries to guess what’s going to happen next when watching a film for the first time, but there’s really no way not to have a strong suspicion of how things will play out while watching The Visitor. The film looks great and Justin P. Lange does a fine job of building a brooding atmosphere, but one doppelgӓnger and stranger-in-a-strange-land cliche after another makes for a lackluster seen-it-all-before effort.

 

Robert (Finn Jones) leaves his native London to move with his wife Maia (Jessica McNamee) to her ancestral manor in the United States. Astute viewers will know right off the bat that the locals are being rather creepy in their kindness toward welcoming him, and it doesn’t help matters that Maia is giving him suspicious glances while this happens, and is reassuring him a bit too much that nothing is wrong when he discovers a painting of a man who looks like him in their new home. Robert becomes obsessed with the idea that the man in the portrait is really him and starts down a rabbit hole that leads him into danger.

 

Jones, McNamee, and the supporting players all give solid performances, but they, along with Lange, are hampered by an uninspired, trope-ridden screenplay by Simon Boyes and Adam Mason. The technical aspects are all fine, though. I recommend The Visitor for ancestral-curse and fish-out-of-water horror film completists. 

 

 

The Visitor, from Paramount Home Entertainment, Blumhouse Television, and Epix, will be released ondigital and on demand on October 7th and on EPIX on December 2022. 

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