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A teen living under house arrest becomes convinced his neighbor is a serial killer.
"Disturbia" is a remake of the 1954 Alfred Hitchcock movie "Rear Window," updated for a newer, younger generation of moviegoers who've probably never seen the original (like me). Shia LaBeouf stars as Kale, a boy in his late teens who tragically looses his father in a terrible car crash and blames himself because he was driving. After the accident, he just has trouble coping and becomes very sullen, withdrawn and troubled. When he punches a teacher in the face at school, he finds himself in front of a judge and sentenced to doing 3 months of house arrest. His mother Julie (Carrie-Anne Moss) takes away his TV, video games, etc... so to survive the boredom he starts spying on his neighbors and learns about their habits and secrets. Soon, however, he suspects that his neighbor Mr. Turner (David Morse) might be a killer that's on the loose according to the recent news reports. So, with the help of his best friend Ronnie (Aaron Yoo) and the new girl-next-door Ashley (Sarah Roemer) who he's also been spying on, they team up to spy on Mr. Turner and see if he's really the killer.
"Disturbia" is by far one of the best PG-13 thrillers that I've seen in a long time. The cast has great chemistry together and the acting was excellent all-around. I've never watched "Rear Window" so I cannot make any comparisons to it, but I will say that "Disturbia" is genuinely thrilling and really held my attention the entire time. There's some great humor thrown in to offset the seriousness of the main plot, lots of paranoia and second guessing, lots of tension and uncertainty… right up to the end, the killer could just be a normal guy that's being spied on by a paranoid teenager. This movie isn't perfect though… there are a few scenes that just didn't seem to work well… they were used as plot accelerators and vastly changed the direction of the plot very quickly (such as when Kale and Ashley both get romantic with each other, or when the plot shifts from just being fun and lighthearted to suddenly focusing all attention on Mr. Turner). Those few scenes didn't offer much of an explanation as to why those things happened so suddenly.
All in all, I'd give this movie 4.5 STARS (out of 5). Re-watch value: HIGH
"Disturbia" is a suspense thriller remake of "The rear window". After his father's death, Kale becomes sullen, withdrawn, and troubled -- so much so that he finds himself under a court-ordered sentence of house arrest. His mother, Julie, works night and day to support herself and her son, only to be met with indifference and lethargy. The walls of his house begin to close in on Kale. He becomes a voyeur as his interests turn outside the windows of his suburban home towards those of his neighbors, one of which Kale begins to suspect is a serial killer. But, are his suspicions merely the product of cabin fever and his overactive imagination?
I felt this movie had a really good story and plot; however there were things that I felt slowed the movie down. The acting and suspense of the movie were very well done and the story kept moving in a positive direction; however it just lacked depth or complexity. The lack of story was made up for with jokes and a humorous type of cover; this just didn't seem right in a suspense thriller. On the positive side however the ending was well done, and I felt the story was well written.
Overall Rating: 3 Stars (out of 5). Re-Watch Value: Moderate (I will rent on DVD and re-watch to see if I missed something).