Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Disturbia

It is in fact a disturbing movie, definitely not for the under 13 crowd, maybe even not for the over 13 crowd if serial killers bother you.

Disturbia brings the serial killer right into the suburban neighborhood, which is where most are said to lurk, and makes the film very creepy.

Growing up, we had a next-door neighbor who was notorious for her partially open blinds, night and day. She was a lonely little (or not so little) woman who’d never had kids and didn’t get the constant noise and fracas the neighborhood group made. We thought she was creepy—spying on us—but maybe she was on to something.

In Disturbia, spying turns out for the best. If not for Shia LaBeouf’s (Kale in Disturbia) boredom due to house arrest and his consequential spying spree on all the neighbors, a serial killer, played by a very convincing David Morse, would have continued his vicious killing cycle.

A couple of things really worked for me in this film: without giving away too much something tragic happens to Kale’s (Shia LaBeouf) dad, and the young man is changed into an uncommunicative, sullen teenager. Okay, this describes most teenagers, but this kid has an excuse. In one scene, Kale’s Spanish teacher, who is clearly put-out with his student’s lack of scholastic achievement, attempts to ‘guilt’ him into reacting, to participating in class by bringing up Kale’s dad—Kale does react, by punching the teacher in the nose. Okay, for all you teachers, I don’t condone the violence, but Kale stayed true to character, reacting from the gut. I thought this scene was well done and not overacted.

Another scene: when Kale’s mom has been taken prisoner—sorry, needed to let you know that—by the crazy serial killer neighbor, Kale goes after her. He doesn’t hesitate, even though his fear is palpable on the screen. While in the neighbor’s house, Kale makes a number of macabre discoveries, any of which would send most normal folks into the street and waiting for the cops to arrive. Not Kale, he stays after his mom, calling out to her, opening creepy secret doors, and traversing through gruesome rooms even though he knows the serial killer is probably in the house. Again, he stayed true to character, putting his mom’s safety before his own.

Disturbia is a dark, suspenseful film—definitely not date movie type stuff—but it works on a number of levels.

Seen any great (or not so great) films lately?

1 comment:

Andrea Geist said...

I just watched Serenity, again. Ever since Shannon introduced me to the series - I am a big fan. I loved the TV show and the movie. Why? 1) The characters. The characters are so well constructed with unique quirks and believeable motivations! 2)There is no waste, especially in the series, every word and action is clean and necessary. The writer/producer Josh Whedon is amazingly skilled. Even if you are not a SF fan, get the CD's of the series FireFly.

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