Neighbor, The (DVD)


Neighbor, The (2016)Starring Josh Stewart, Bill Engvall, Luke Edwards, Alex Essoe

Directed by Marcus Dunstan

I think everybody at one time or another has dealt with a neighbor (or wished they hadn’t).  They can be either a curse or a blessing, but any way you slice it, when a neighbor is in your life, there appears to be a breach of your personal privacy to a certain extent.

What if you managed to discover that your border-mate is most assuredly not who they seem to be? What could they be doing behind closed doors? The possibilities are staggering and probably best not uncovered… enter Marcus Dunstan’s The Neighbor, and prepare to start looking for some new real estate prospects.

Starring Josh Stewart (The Collector) as a former soldier named Johnny, who alongside his girlfriend, Rosie (Essoe), lives in a roomy country residence with plenty of space out back to perform their (ahem) money-making operation, if you will. Turns out that Johnny is under the thumb of his drug-running uncle (Skip Sudduth), and the mere thought of anyone ripping him off is usually met with extreme punishment.

Across the property lives Troy (Engvall), a man who enjoys his solitude, is not very keen on finding trespassers on his land, and is a crack shot with the rifle – all adding up to someone who really needs to be left well alone. So there’s the set-up: We’ve got a whole gang of ne’er-do-wells, and even though we look at all of their shortcomings, the illusion here is that there’s a little more something behind the curtain to reveal. Rosie finds out just that one day when the rather sizable telescope she utilizes to spy on Troy catches something horrific in its lens, and that’s when the film begins to ramp up to an intolerable level.

Allow me to correctly define “intolerable” in this case: I’m not talking about something so horrendous that it’s painful to observe, but rather an amazingly taut and tightly-wound package of psychological instances that you’ll be begging for the scenes to speed along so there can be a payoff… jeez, I’ve still got cramps in my hands from clenching my fists together for so long!

Stewart more than holds his own as the anti-hero – a man trying to do what’s right for himself and his woman in the face of family loyalty, but it’s Engvall that unconditionally steals the film right out from everyone’s feet. His portrayal of the slightly off loner from next-door is intensely chilling, and as the movie goes on, you’ll see a transformational shift that sways back and forth; yet, each and every alteration is so seamlessly worked that you’ll debate whether to cringe or sympathize – it just works that well.

Once you fully immerse yourself in the film, I think you’ll see that there really isn’t a whole lot different here, either structurally or presentation-wise, but there’s just something about it that excels on many levels when all the pieces come together. The Neighbor is so much more of a thriller as opposed to a horror film, but I really don’t think that the masses will mind. Attention all fans of Blue Collar Comedy: Mr. Engvall ain’t lookin’ for laughs in this one! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

  • Film
User Rating 3.08 (12 votes)


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