Friday, October 16, 2009

The Stepfather has little going for it

Posted By on Fri, Oct 16, 2009 at 3:29 PM

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In The Stepfather, a remake of a 1987 film, Dylan Walsh plays David Harris, a guy who's not just your everyday, run-of-the-mill mean stepfather. The guy’s a bona fide serial killer who tracks down single moms, gains their trust and then offs them and their kids. After a brief run-in at the grocery store, he quickly starts dating Susan (Sela Ward), a recently divorced mother of three. Everything’s going according to his plan (they’re quickly engaged and her two youngest children seem to like him okay) until her oldest son Michael (Penn Badgley) comes home from military school. Michael doesn’t trust David even though his swimsuit model of a girlfriend Kelly (Amber Heard) tells him he’s too hard on the guy. Michael does a little digging (it doesn’t take much to realize David’s shady behavior suggests a troubled past) and figures out the guy is wanted for murdering an entire family. But finding hard evidence proves more difficult in this drawn-out movie. A by-the-numbers thriller that isn’t helped any by its bad acting, The Stepfather has little going for it. The suspense takes too long to build and it's filmed as it were a made-for-TV movie. The scariest thing: the ending leaves the door open for a sequel. *

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