Director: John McPherson
Starring: Kathleen Quinlan, Timothy Busfield, Claudia Christian, William Boyett, Heather Lilly
The Jarretts have finally found their dream house…Now it’s about to become their worst nightmare
The movie starts off with a great little intro that has some creepy 80’s horror music running while we see dark spaces, water dripping, all kinds of typical horror stuff. Then we see an old catlady, who obviously loves her furballs, getting attacked by something horrifying while her beloved cats sit and watch.
We then get to meet the Jarretts who are moving from the big city in the same house where the catlady lived. Paul is the husband and lawyer, Lindsey is his wife and also an author. Their kid is Tessa, quite an annoying little crybaby. Even though they are the ones who bought the house, they have some competition over the ownership of the place when a pack of cats starts to cause havoc on the family. Are the Jarretts able to fight off the evil cats and regain their house or will the cats make this territory their own?
So, is it possible to make cats scary? Sure, but director John McPherson did not succeed in doing it. I might not be the biggest cat person in the world, but cats running in packs? They manage to kill people just by jumping on them, not even biting or doing anything that seems harmful? There is also a leader cat, which looks a lot like Church from Pet Sematary. Now this cat looks like it can do some harm, if the rest of the kittens looked like this one then we might have had something here. The leader cat and Paul does have a final battle type of scene, which just ends up being ridiculous. One man vs. one cat is not exactly a fair fight.
There is also a subplot here with Paul helping out Claire, Lindsey’s sister, with her divorce and she is more than happy to show her appreciation by being very flirtatious with Paul. All of this is of course totally boring and too much of a soap opera to work in a horror movie. I’m willing to bet a lot that neither of the actors involved in this movie would list their performance in Strays as one of their finest moments.
Strays ends up being a failure. Even the below average Stephen King movie Sleepwalkers is better than this, so if you are fiending for a horror movie with cats in them then see that one instead. Considering this is a made for TV horror film, it isn’t totally worthless, but I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone.