Tom Hanks Project – Film #1 – “He Knows You’re Alone” Review

29 Oct

8 he knows 2

Well, I made it through a slasher film. All in the name of Tom Hanks*. It was decidedly not a great film, but it also wasn’t as completely schlocky** as I expected it to be. Despite some really bad acting on the part of the lead detective (seriously, where did they get this guy?)  it was an engrossing-enough film with suspense and a very high*** body count. I was stressed out literally the entire time, and my body felt like I’d been hit by a truck when it was over. I went through our entire apartment to check and make sure nobody was hiding anywhere, and it made me a lot less excited about the prospect of eventually being a bride to be**** for the rest of that evening. Here’s why.

*Even though he didn’t show up until 58:30 into it.

**It was definitely schlocky. Most of my laughs were at the movie, not with it.

***I believe the body count was eight. Pretty low for a horror movie. Percentage-wise, though, given how small the town was and how few people we actually got to know in it — that’s kinda high.

****Since all the bride to be’s got murdered.

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So the premise of this film is that, in the very beginning, a woman is about to get married to the guy who ends up being the lead detective in the case for this serial killer. The serial killer is the jilted lover of the bride to be, and he kills her on her wedding day, before she can marry the detective (thus, he goes all rogue and wants to take out the killer by himself, causing him to almost never call for backup and be really reckless and say really hokey crap). For some reason, our killer isn’t satisfied just by murdering his own ex — he decides to go after every bride-to-be he can hunt down. He comes back out of the woodwork to kill a girl in a movie theater* (setting the scene that he’ll kill in cold blood, in the open, around tons of other people). That’s all stage-setting fluff for our main star of the film. The woman above, Amy Jensen (played by an actress named Caitlin…yeah I’m creeped out, too), is engaged to marry this kind of asshole-ish bro** dude. She’s super unsure about the whole mess, as you can see by her face, because she’s still in love with a guy who works in a morgue.

*Funnily, Caitlin was covering her eyes when they pull back to reveal they’re at a horror movie. The friend in the theater says “OK, you can look now” and Caitlin opened her eyes as well.

**His bachelor party seemed like an off-campus frat house party. Total bro.

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Morgue guy apparently was out of town when dudebro asked Amy to marry him, so Amy basically tells morgue guy he missed his chance; however it’s clear the whole town knows these two should really be together. That’s basically the primary “love story” plot of the film. So, our dear killer starts to stalk Amy, being super creepy all over town. His creepy move was just to stand 20 feet away from her and stare. 

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He knows where she lives, he knows where she dress shops. He starts by killing her wedding dress tailor, while Amy is there, oblivious to the death scene unfolding in the back of the shop. Amy is staying at her parents’ house while they are out of town, but she’s not alone — she’s got a kid sister and a best friend hanging out with her. The best friend is important, because she is the reason Tom Hanks is in the film for about 10 minutes. Hanks only has 5 minutes of screen time, but he sure he makes the most of them. 

MV5BMTg0NzgyMzg4Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNjA2NTMxNw@@._V1._SX640_SY508_Best friend likes to jog, and when she’s been out jogging, she’s seen Tom running around as well. They all decide to go with Amy to the fair and ride some rides. While waiting in line, Amy reveals to the group that she’s afraid someone is stalking her. Tom goes all Freud on her and explains how this apparition is probably due to guilt, since Amy says she never sees the guy unless she’s alone. Then Tom runs off with the best friend for the afternoon while Amy and her kid sister ride a haunted tunnel ride and the creepy dude is seen hiding in the shadows. Best friend is supposed to go on a date with Tom later that evening, but ends up offering to stay at home with Amy since she’s so freaked out by everything, so we never see Tom again. Best part of this? Tom was so lovable in his two scenes, that test audiences were upset when they showed him getting murdered, so they CUT HIS MURDER SCENE OUT OF THE MOVIE!

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Amy goes to drop her kid sister off at a sleepover, which is very, very unfortunate for her best friend. After we see this shot, it’s pretty much set in stone that best friend’s gotta go. Hers is the bloodiest death of the whole film, in fact, as her head ends up in an aquarium. Yuck. That knife rack is soon shown with only four knives. I’m sorry, did the killer go to murder without bringing his own knife? Poor planning. Caitlin barely knew about the head in the aquarium. Her eyes were totally covered.

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When Amy finds her friend, this is how she feels about the whole situation. I cannot imagine how scarring that would be. Anyhow, stalker guy is then in Amy’s home but she manages to escape him there and run to her car and drive to the morgue to seek help from her truly beloved. He finally believes that someone’s after her, and our detective guy ends up in the creepy warehouse-like morgue with the couple and the stalker, and we have ourselves a showdown. Detective guy decides to trail Amy to “keep her safe” but instead just makes it very clear he’s following her and scares her more than helps her.

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*SPOILER* It’s not looking great for Amy and her beau, but they actually both survive. Detective guy is murdered, of course, because he’s a doofus, but the murderer is apprehended by police at the last minute, and then Amy ends up marrying morgue guy instead of her original suitor. There’s a twist at the end which I will leave to your imagination in case you ever decide you wanna suffer through this film. *SPOILER* Spurned frat bro shows up on her wedding day and presumably murders her. It ends with her screaming. Let’s just get to our predictions.

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PREDICTIONS

  • Film rating: Caitlin: 4.5 Zack: 5.5 I guessed I was going to give this film 2 Wilsons out of 10. Despite the fact that it made me feel frightened for the rest of the night and really set me on edge, I actually rated it 4.5 Wilsons out of 10. It was engaging, other Caitlin acted the part of Amy quite well, and while 8 people were brutally murdered (I forgot to mention some other friend who was having an affair with a professor and their very American Psycho-esque death), it really did suck me in and have me rooting for the survival of Amy. Yeah, it was laughably bad at times, but wasn’t that bad. We were invested in it and what little Hanks we had was great.
  • Thanx rating: Caitlin: 6 Zack: 7 I guessed that Tom was going to get a ranking of 5 Wilsons from me for his acting in this film. I bumped him up to a 6 after seeing it. He was definitely better than anybody else in the film, but he was also only in the film for two scenes totaling what was probably 10 minutes, so I just can’t bump him higher than that. Hanks’ speech at the amusement park was worth the price of admission on its own. He was clearly head and shoulders above the other actors in this movie. Especially his movie girlfriend. Who no longer had a head on her shoulders. Sorry.
  • Times we cry: Both: 0 I guessed I would never cry during the film, and that was accurate. However…I did cry shortly after the film when I felt like there might be someone hiding in our apartment. I don’t think we’ll count that, though. Caitlin was definitely affected by this one. Last horror movie for her.
  • Times we laugh out loud: Caitlin: 8 Zack: 9 I guessed I’d laugh out loud three times. I actually laughed 8 times. I don’t remember why, to be perfectly honest, but apparently some funny stuff went down. Thank god, because I needed the relief. Caitlin laughed at almost every Hanks line. I laughed at funny music cues or echoes or how ridiculous the movie was being.

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  • Times Caitlin covers her eyes due to violence: 15 I guessed “easily 14,” and the correct answer was 15. I would frequently throw a blanket over my head that I could kind of see through, and then cover my eyes with my hands underneath for extra coverage. I saw more of the head-in-aquiarium even through the blanket than I would have liked, though. That blanket stayed up for at least 1/3 of the movie.
  • Love interest believability: Caitlin: 6.5 Zack: 5 I guessed 4 out of 10 Wilsons for Thanx’s love interest compatibility/how much I’d care about the pair. I ended up saying 6.5, because it was actually a really cute pairing and when Hanks trips the best friend on her jog to get her to stop and chat with him, it’s kinda adorable (if a bit dangerous). I was really bummed when best friend stayed home instead of going on the date with Hanks — she might still have her head! They were kinda cute together in that running scene, but with so little to work with, I can’t go too high here. 
  • How many lines we’ll be able to quote along with the film: N/A As predicted, we were unable to quote any lines, although the terrible detective did use a few stereotypical “By god, I’ll find him if it’s the last thing I do!”-type idioms. 

In summary, I will never, ever, ever watch another slasher film as long as I live. Thank you and goodnight. 

Click here for all Tom Hanks Project Content 

If you still want to see it, here’s the entire movie:

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One Response to “Tom Hanks Project – Film #1 – “He Knows You’re Alone” Review”

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  1. Introduction to The Tom Hanks Project | rockloveaustin - November 10, 2013

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