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Monday, January 12, 2015

Open Windows

CLOSED
Open Windows - Closed

It's strange how a trailer can make you want to see a film, but upon seeing said film, you really have to question your judgement. This is exactly how I felt about "Open Windows." There is an interesting premise, smart camerawork, and a few other things that standout, but I feel like this could have been a made for TV Lifetime or CW movie.

"Windows" is the tale of Jill Goddard, played by Sasha Grey, who is doing a press junket for her latest film "Dark Sky." In the wings is Nick Chambers, Jill's biggest fan, played by Elijah Wood. Nick, having won a contest to meet Jill, receives the bad news from her "manager," Chord, that Jill is going blow him off for a night with her boyfriend. While Nick is heartbroken, Chord convinces him "don't get mad, get even." Add in a group of hackers, a case of mistaken identity, a kidnapping, a car chase, and some explosions, and that's "Windows" in a nutshell.

Where do I start with this movie. I'll say this, it's not a bad film per say, but the fact that it's so frenetic and there are so many things happening at the same time it's a little confusing and it really distracts from the movie. It almost seems like the director really wanted to show you everything he ever learned about the Internet, hacking, and spying, roll it into a webpage view, add shaky cam, and boom, you have this film.

While the production is messy, I actually liked the acting. Wood is effective as playing the same character he's been playing since he finished up the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy; the creepy looking man who still happens to look like a 16 year old kid. The other revelation is Sasha Grey, and I'm just not saying that because she is incredibly easy on the eyes, but she can actually act relatively effectively. Her portrayal as pretty much herself, is fun and just campy enough to be entertaining. Did I mention how good looking she is in this film.....

Overall, the premise of "Windows" has potential, but it trips all over itself with its technological thriller premise and editing style. If there is anything to watch it's Wood's desire to keep making small independent films that have promise, and of course, Sasha Grey.

Fun Fact: At one of the festivals the movie was screened at, the director, Nacho Vigalondo, said it was OK for the audience to slap him on their way out if they didn't like the movie.

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