Observance (2015)

For the sake of not having the only movie review on this blog right now being something as shitty as The Human Centipede, I’ll write another quick review of something I’ve watched recently. I prefer to do these right after watching so they’re fresh in my mind, but there are also many movies I’ve seen that I might not get around to watching again for awhile or at all. Also, I can’t let the audience of no one actively following my blog think that I don’t have patrician taste in films.

Anyways, this is a movie that I was really interested in watching when I first heard about it, because I really liked the premise: A private investigator gets a job that involves staking out a woman’s apartment, and weird stuff starts to happen. I was expecting from a premise like this that the film would pretty much happen from the perspective of a voyeur, where the main character is only getting a small glimpse into some strange glitch in reality that could be happening anywhere but that no one would notice. As much as it’s always been fashionable (in the US at least) to romanticize being away from cities, I for one feel like urban settings are a far more interesting place to explore these sorts of stories, where strange and mysterious things happen in the cracks of all the dense diversity of different spaces and traffics.

But that’s unfortunately not what this ended up being. The movie to be fair was filmed quite beautifully and had many very impressive shots, but the narrative ended up being more about what the PI was experiencing in the empty apartment that had been rented out for him to perform his stakeout than it was about the woman across the street he was watching. The narrative also went in places that didn’t make a whole lot of sense, which would have been fine if it was going for more of a surrealist puzzle in the vein of David Lynch. But it felt more like the writer just didn’t know what to do with the premise. Which is forgivable I suppose, since the idea I had in mind for the movie would be kind of challenging to pull off. There were some decently effective spooky sequences and imagery in it, some that might be really repulsive and hard to watch for certain people, which is always a plus.

I would say it’s worth watching to appreciate the filmmaking. Probably wouldn’t re-watch though.

Created: 2022-10-14 Fri 15:13