‘THE Voyeurs’ is set in Montreal so you can hear a smattering of Canadian French being spoken here. A bi-racial couple, Pippa (Sydney Sweeney of the TV series “Everything Sucks” and “Sharp Objects” and the film “Nocturne”) and Thomas (Justice Smith of “Jurassic World” and “Pikachu”), live in together for the first time in their own loft apartment.
They notice that an apartment across the street also have a young couple who seem to not to care if neighbors could see them making love in all their naked glory (Ben Hardy of “Bohemian Rhapsody” and Natasha Liu Bordizzo of the Netflix TV series “The Society”.)
Both their apartments have no curtains or blinds so they seem to deliberately expose themselves for all the world to see them having sex. Pippa and Thomas soon become obsessed on spying on their neighbors. They become professional voyeurs enjoying a free peep show.
They even bought binoculars to see better in full view and installed a laser pointer surveillance microphone to also hear what’s going on with the young man, a professional photographer, and his partner. They get turned on while watching and also make love. They can likewise see the man when he is also seducing and making love to his models while the woman is away.
Pippa works as an optometrist and, one day, the woman, named Julia, comes to their shop to get new eye glasses. Julia is very friendly and invites Pippa to lunch and they become friends. She learns that the name of the man is Sebastian or Seb and she feels compelled to tell Julia that Seb is cheating on her.
Thomas gets mad at Pippa for getting deeply involved in the relationship of their neighbors. He tells her to stop spying on them. But things get worse when they see Julia confronting Seb and then killing herself after their fight. From hereon, things get very, very complicated up to the film’s very messy climax involving heinous murder and deceit.
We don’t know if you’d buy all the explanation for the events that have transpired before the climax but, for us, it fails to convince us to suspend our disbelief at all. The problem with the material is that it is so derivative. The original source is, of course, Alfred Hitchcock’s classic “Rear Window”, which has also been the inspiration of Brian de Palma’s “Body Double” and other similar films, including DJ Caruso’s “Disturbia” with Shia LaBeouf.
The problem is that it never gets to surpass any of these more superior past films and it is, in comparison, a very pale imitation. The way the dark story is developed and the resolution at the end are all wildly implausible. It manages to hold our interests for only a while before it flies off the window in its final act to its hopelessly ludicrous twists and surprises.
Director Michael Mohan (who also wrote the script) seems like he has never seen his movie’s much more believable predecessors. He definitely does not have the coherent storytelling skills of Hitchcock and De Palma.
Yes, the film is replete with various explicit sex scenes, but sorry to say that the actors are not at all attractive and can hardly act convincingly. Another problem is that we really don’t get invested in any of the seedy characters. They just don’t add up, specially Pippa as the main protagonist.
Her obsession to snoop on their neighbors has so become unhealthy for her own good. She gets so annoyingly fixated that it’s no longer just curiosity but borders on perversion. When she finally gets the comeuppance that she deserves, we don’t even sympathize with her and can only say: “Buti nga sa’yo. You deserve it!”