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yellowish hall...

yellowish hall...

R

Kate Dickie, Tony Curran

Clyde: That feels good…one of life’s small pleasures, eh?  Takin’ yer boots off…

Jackie (Dickie) is a CCTV operator in Scotland.  She lives a fairly lonely life, spending most of her days sitting in front of a wall of video screens, peering in on the lives of random strangers on the street.  One day she sees a man that she recognizes as a face from her past.  She becomes obsessed with tracking him around the city, but eventually she gets too deeply involved.

This is essentially a variation on the Hitchcock, Rear Window theme.  Jackie sits safely in her little room, observing others, knowing the regulars that she sees every day.  When she sees Clyde, and suspects that he might be up to no good, she leaves the safety of her observation room and puts herself at risk.

The question is, why?  Well, the movie explains why in the end, and while it makes sense and is somewhat interesting, I felt like the ending was a bit of a let down.  It’s not terrible, it’s just not as hard hitting as the previous buildup during the movie would have you think it will be.  Plus, there’s a rather graphic, uncomfortable sex scene that shows up out of nowhere that I could have done without.

I did enjoy the early portions of the movie, as we get little hints here and there about why this specific person is of such interest to Jackie.  There’s definitely a feeling of uneasiness built up as Jackie gets more and more involved, but as I mentioned, there’s just not much of a payoff in the end.

The acting is fine, though a couple characters speak in such thick accents, I could rarely understand a word they said.  Maybe that hampered my enjoyment of some of it on some level.

Either way, it’s an interesting, though not particularly engrossing, story with a good lead performance and an effective sense of uneasiness for most of its running time.  The occasional lulls and fizzle-out ending hold it back from being a strong recommendation.

Big Brother is watching in Scotland…

10 – 1.5 for a lackluster ending – 1.2 for a few lulls here and there – .6 for some unpleasant scenes = 6.7