Movie Review: Open Windows – Keep An Open Mind

Written by Josh Bornais December 05, 2014

open_windows_sxswAfter reading all of the negative reviews for Nacho Vigalondo’s movie “Open Windows” I had to go see it to see if it really was that bad. The movie itself was actually well done, despite being a very different style of movie. This film is a Spanish thriller film that relies on recording computer monitors and browser windows to capture a large portion of the movie. Different? Yes, very much so, but “Open Windows” does a very good job in doing this method of recording and it delivers an OK story overall.

The movie is about a man named Nick (Elijah Wood) who has won a dinner date with a rising star whom he’s a big fan of, Jill Goddard (Sasha Grey). Jill, however, soon decides to not fulfill the contest which in turn makes Nick very upset. Nick is then approached by a man named Chord (a man who claims to be Jill’s campaign manager) who offers Nick the ability to constantly watch Jill on his computer. Little does Nick know that by doing this, he is putting both himself and Jill at risk.

“I’m your biggest fan!”

Elijah Wood plays the role as Nick very well, and he becomes a very convincing fanboy in the movie which is important in Nick’s role. Sasha Grey also plays the role of Jill extremely well. Both actors’ performances definitely added to the overall enjoyment of the film since they emotionally engaged with the audience and brought life to their roles. Vigalondo could not have done a better job casting for this film.

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The movie also does a great job showing great examples of how the Internet can be cruel and harmful to others. Just the idea of an anonymous pervert sitting behind a computer screen watching your every move through hidden cameras is very unsettling. It utilizes the found footage technique made popular through movies such as: The Blair Witch Project, Paranormal Activity, and Cloverfield really well and adds some real time elements to that, making the movie flow really well as a whole.

Though the acting was really well done, the story had some issues. There were certain times where inexplicably irrelevant things happened in the plot just to move the story along. To avoid spoilers I won’t bring up specific examples and although this is a minor issue, it does drag the story down a little bit as I asked myself a few times when watching the movie: why is this happening?

Open-Windows

Another thing that disappointed me when watching this movie was the lack of originality when playing with the thriller genre. Although the movie utilized unique ways to film the movie, I felt like it did not add much to the thriller genre. Throughout the movie there were certain times that I looked up at the screen and said to myself: I’ve seen something like this before. Movies like Strange Days were obvious influences with the making of this movie as I found that a lot of the ideas presented in this film were borrowed from Strange Days. It doesn’t take too much away from the overall enjoyment factor of the movie.

“Don’t judge a book by its cover.”

Overall, I enjoyed this movie a lot more than I thought I would. It goes to show you that always relying on Internet Reviews to get a full idea of whether a movie is bad or not is not the best idea. Elijah Wood dominated his role and I heavily enjoyed the clever ideas in the way of shooting the movie to make what seemed like a retired thriller feel like a new and exciting experience.

Rating: 7.5/10

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