After endearing herself to the indie crowd with offbeat rom-com Ruby Sparks, Zoe Kazan will be testing out an entirely different genre by starring in horror-thriller There Are Monsters.
The pic, written and directed by The Strangers‘ Bryan Bertino, will center on a young mother who must protect her daughter against attacks by a terrifying, merciless creature of unknown origins. The official synopsis reads:
There Are Monsters focuses on a mother (Kazan) and her terrified young daughter Lizzie who are trapped and tormented by a merciless creature. In the end, only a mother’s protective love, her most primal instinct, can save them.
In the wake of The Conjuring, Insidious and The Babadook, horror pics about beset-upon matriarchs are hot again, and it will be interesting to see what kind of spin Bertino, whose home-invasion thriller The Strangers was one of the most effective, non-supernatural frighteners of the past ten years, can bring to the set-up.
The writer-director will hopefully have more luck with this one than his sophomore film, found-footage Mockingbird, which was put on a shelf by Blumhouse then unceremoniously dumped onto Netflix and VOD years after it was shot. Why the movie was treated so poorly is beyond me – yes, it wasn’t quite as scary as The Strangers, but the pic was still strongly directed and fairly unnerving.
With Kazan, a tremendously likable actress, in the cast, I’m expecting big things from There Are Monsters. The actress has become a hot commodity in romantic fare like What If and In Your Eyes, and she’ll almost certainly be able to hold a horror movie by herself, showcasing a different kind of dramatic side that has only occasionally come out to play in her last projects. Her characters are usually sweet and cheerful but never naive and weak, which I’d imagine will translate extremely well to horror.