Director: John Jarratt
Writer: Kristijana Maric
Stars: John Jarratt, Kaarin Fairfax
Release Date: In cinemas now
Review by Dave Griffiths
There’s no doubt that John Jarratt is the current Aussie horror ‘it’ man. The Wolf Creek series of films have made him a household name in horror circles and the one time Play School host was suddenly gaining attention from directors like Quentin Tarantino who liked what they saw. Then he appeared in the brilliant 100 Bloody Acres and cemented his horror status. So horror fans could be forgiven for getting excited about Jarratt’s new film StalkHer but all I will say people is don’t get too excited.
In StalkHer Jarratt (Django Unchained) plays Jack a chemist at a hospital who moonlights of a nighttime as a stalker and rapist (sorry but there is no nice way to put it). He has decided that his latest victim will be a nurse he watches each day, Emily (Kaarin Fairfax – Young Einstein) but after breaking into her house not everything goes the way he thought it would.
Jarratt also takes the directional helm of StalkHer but sadly this turns out to be the worst possible film he could have decided to be his directional debut. At any cost StalkHer was always going to be a hard sell for its audience to enjoy. For starters having a rapist as a main character isn’t exactly going to adhere the film to an audience and the fact that Emily is also an unlikable character (because of the things the audience learns as the film goes on) means the audience won’t even find themselves barracking for the ‘victim’.
The film is then let down even more so by the weak script provided by first time screenwriter Kristijana Maric. With one character tied up for most of the film there is very little movement, which in turn makes the film feel like a theatre production while Maric decides the best way to portray aggression and nastiness is to fling the c-word into things every now and then. Then there is the fact that the comedic parts of the film aren’t funny (sorry guys but rape and domestic violence aren’t funny topics) and the horror element of the film just isn’t that horrific and you can soon see why this is a film that needs to be avoided.
StalkHer tries to shock its audience. But it is neither creative nor intelligent and in the end is a horror movie that is just dead on arrival to the cinema.