Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan



Poor LB Jefferies. All he had was a telephone (dial-up!), a pair of binoculars, and a camera with a long lens. (Oh, and Grace Kelly to keep him company now and then.) Don’t remember old Jeff? He was the guy with the broken leg in Rear Window, which is the obvious inspiration for this film. The guy in this one is a teenager, naturally, and bored out of his mind because he’s under electronic house arrest, confined to home and yard. After firmly establishing his credentials as a spoiled little asshole, after his mom cuts off his X-box, his MySpace, and his wide-screen plasma TV—all of which will probably be included in the new Geneva Conventions against torture when this generation gets around to amending them—he’s left with only his laptop, his digital videocam, several cell phones, high speed download … you get the picture. (Oh, and the voyeuristic pleasure of watching his neighbor, the delectable Sarah Roemer.) This is going to be a high-tech variant of Hitchcock. But he finally begins to get engaged in watching the world around him, and this is where the movie gets pretty good. Of course his neighbor is creepy (David Morse), and we wonder if things are what they seem. The tension builds nicely, though this is a long way from Hitchcock caliber … and then … without revealing any real surprises, then the movie degenerates into a gross-out in the dark with people behaving stupidly. Too bad. It had me going there for a while.