Day #45: Cherry Tree Lane (2010)

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Cherry Tree Lane (2010) IMDB

Synopsis:

[From IMDB:] A couple is terrorized by a gang who is hunting their son.

My take:

I think there are a few things about Cherry Tree Lane that could have been improved. The script is a bit amateurish, for example. The scenes where people are being physically harmed aren’t exactly believable, either.

Still, at its core, Cherry Tree Lane manages to be the type of film that makes me feel most uneasy, because there’s something believable about it. And it’s not filmed in a way that separates you from the horror of what’s happening, like The Strangers does. Rather, it draws you in, holds you in place, and forces you to decide what your own limits are.

Personally, I hate how the sexual assault/rape of women is basically a trope of horror/slasher movies. There are other movies that focus so heavily on this as a plot device that I watched them once, and have refused to do so ever again (and still haven’t convinced myself to revisit any of them yet, even for the sake of this blog). So, when I was watching Cherry Tree Lane and I knew it was coming, I was squirming in my seat. I was anticipating it, and dreading it; which is clearly the reaction that the filmmakers wanted from me. It’s a common theme of the movie that they aren’t trying to hide what’s coming; they want you to know well in advance, and to experience the discomfort of having your expectations filled.

The introduction of new characters later in the film brings with it an almost surreal quality, as inane personal dramas are played out in this scene of violently disrupted urban life. The enemies aren’t masked strangers – they’re people that you’ve probably encountered on the street, at work, or at school. They’re real – and all the more horrible for it.

So, yes, there are some weaknesses to Cherry Tree Lane. But it still manages to be pretty horrific, in my eyes.

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