One of the final victims of the Disney/Fox merger has finally surfaced online through its new home at streaming service Netflix. The Amy Adams led film was due to be released in 2019 but was cancelled due to extremely negative audience test screenings and re-shoots were done. Then Covid hit and the studio made the smart decision to shop it around and Netflix snapped it up. On the surface this looks like a sure fire hit. Based on a book, starring Amy Adams in thriller territory, how could this go so wrong?
Well it does. From the very minute the film starts something just feels not quite right. Usually this would be a good thing in a thriller, however in this its mainly confusion and poorly edited flashbacks that leave you thinking what is actually going on.
The story centers around a child psychologist Anna (Amy Adams) who works from home due to her agoraphobia. Not being able to leave the house, she is the ultimate covid work from home employee. Her family have left her and she is struggling to deal with the fact that she can’t see her child everyday. Instead of developing an addiction to The Real Housewives on TV, Anna passes her time looking out her window around the neighbourhood. When a new family move in across the street, Anna witnesses some disturbing things that lead her to believe there is something happening. This mixed with the cocktail of her medication with copious amounts of wine and no sleep has Anna questioning reality.
If you are wondering why does this sound familiar, not only is it based on a book, it is also a clear copy of Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film Rear Window. Some of the shots are even identical which if it was done correctly would be a homage or tribute, this comes across as a blatant copy that feels sloppy.
Adams does the best with the material she is given and this is the only reason it got one star. Special mention must be made to Julieanne Moore with her bleach blonde do and banter with Adams over wine is the only enjoyable scene in the whole film. It is only fleeting but enough to get you excited and then the rest of the film is an anti-climax. There is an ok performance from Anna’s housemate David (Wyatt Russell) who lives downstairs does deliver a compelling performance as the tortured soul helping the woman who can’t leave her house.
The movie definitely feels like a Frankenstein, cut and recut, new inserted shots that haven’t been edited together well at all just leads to the audience looking confused. If the subject matter was remotely good then this is something that could easily be forgiven, regrettably it is not the case and the movie just falls into complete dud territory. Not even Adams can save this film from its many flaws. Usually studio interference can be an easy source of blame, but it would seem in this case, the negative test screenings were correct and no amount of reshoots could ultimately save the film.
The Woman In The Window is now streaming exclusively on Netflix.