Reviewed in the United States on September 11, 2021
This is a spoiler review, so don't read past this first paragraph because there are some major twists. My general review is that this was a very entertaining movie if you want to turn off your brain and enjoy a thriller with a lots of sex and nudity....and there is a great deal of both. The main actresses are in phenomenal shape and show off their bodies quite a bit.
But I had to give three stars for the sheer absurdity of some of the plot points.
**SPOILERS AFTER THIS POINT***
The first 25% of the movie was very good. Our "heroes" are Pippa and Thomas, a young couple who move into a rather nice apartment in what I presume to be a very high-end part of Montreal. Pippa is an optometrist and Thomas is in a band, though we never meet any of his band mates and it is unclear how successful he is.
One night, our couple is eating takeout and having surprising realistic sounding couple banter when they notice that the couple across the street, in an equally swanky apartment, are getting it on. They have a few laughs while peeping, joke around about what pervs they are for watching, and move on.
A normal couple would probably have left it alone here and left this as a story to tell their friends at the next dinner party, but Pippa and Thomas just cannot let it go. They continue to watch with binoculars, even having sex while watching one such encounter. They discover that the man, who is a photographer of nude models, is cheating on his wife with the very models he photographs.
It's at this point that the movie crosses the line into absurdity. Pippa and Thomas decide that watching through binoculars is not enough - they need to LISTEN as well. They rig some crude contraption that uses a laser pointer that reflects light back from a tiny mirror they plant in the couple's apartment, and then use Thomas' music equipment to translate the light reflected back, which are the sound waves from the apartment, into electronic sounds. I am not a physicist, but I am reasonably sure that living in a metropolitan area would have picked up a great deal of ambient noise that even the most sophisticated sound equipment would not be able to clean up. But because the plot needs it to, they get an almost crystal clear sound from the apartment, so they can hear the degenerate behavior as well as see it.
The next absurd plot point comes when Pippa, who is VERY HAPPY in her relationship as portrayed, suddenly starts spending a little too much time watching the man have sex, even going so far as to touching herself and sneaking out of bed to watch them at night. This is not healthy behavior, and I believed that the movie would be about her struggles overcoming this addiction.
Now, the main twist that is revealed is that the couple, Julia and Sebastian (Seb for short...), were actually running a sleazy con where they were purposely showing all these sexual escapades knowing full well that Pippa and Thomas were watching. In fact, they were actually photographing Pippa and Thomas and used them in an exhibit, but it went very badly which I will get to shortly.
The woman, Julia, decides to befriend Pippa by going to get eyeglasses and pretending to bond with her over coffee and even a spa trip. I will admit these made for some tense scenes as Pippa was terrified that Julia would recognize her from the party which they snuck in to plant the mirror. Plus, she wanted to tell Julia that her husband was cheating on her.
We now get to the next absurd plot point. Apparently, Pippa is able to connect to Julia and Seb's wireless printer, and starts sending her printed messages about Seb's infidelity. As a result, Julia pretends to kill herself. At the time, it makes sense, but when you consider it was a con all along, how in the world did they manage to fool all the medical examiners and police officers?
As a result of this, Thomas dumps Pippa because he had thought they were done spying on the neighbors, and storms out after basically calling her a despicable human being.
Cue absurd plot point three. Pippa, in a moment of guilt and vulnerability, HAS SEX with the grieving Seb in what I think was probably one of the most graphic sex scenes I have ever seen on an Amazon show. And because the plot requires it, Thomas returns home, drinks some water or juice or something, sees Pippa riding Seb like a cowgirl, and hangs himself. Again, ruled a suicide.
Cue absurd plot point four. Thomas was apparently poisoned as it is revealed later on. Julia, thought dead, apparently snuck into the apartment, poisoned the water or juice Thomas drank, and then, despite being a rail thin girl with almost no upper body, managed to lift a taller and much heavier man to make it look like he hung himself....again, no known investigation done as it is common knowledge that self-hangings are difficult to pull off, and the police almost always investigate and would do an autopsy where they would find he was poisoned. Sloppy, careless writing. And all of this apparently happened while Seb was seducing Pippa at the local bar.
Julia and Seb must have been freaking psychics to know that Pippa would come to the bar to drink with Seb, Thomas would return home at just the right moment to see the two of them screwing, and that he would drink that one container of water/juice that would kill him. Gee golly, they sure got lucky that all of those pieces fell into place, didn't they?
Cue absurd plot point five. There is a bid reveal where it was discovered Julia is still alive, and that they did a whole exhibit on Pippa and Thomas, even exploiting Thomas' suicide. Nobody seems to bat an eye at this, and Julia and Seb apparently make a ton of money and gain international fame. Julia is revealed to be a sociopath who manipulated Pippa, but it is not clear to what end. The only thing that resulted from that short friendship was extreme guilt on Pippa's part when she thinks Julia offed herself, which led her to sleep with Seb, which led Julia to poison Thomas' drink and fake his suicide, at the exact moment when Pippa and Seb were having sex.....I mean...psychic??
Finally, the last absurd part was the ending. Everyone could see from a mile away the wine Pippa sent to Julia and Seb was poisoned, and they should have left it at that, but it turns out they decide to throw another twist in with Pippa using the equipment at her office to permanently blind Julia and Seb...again, no investigations, no arrests. Julia and Seb apparently just accept their punishment?
The logical course of action would have been for Julia to go to the police if she suspected that Thomas was poisoned, and they could have exhumed the body and started a proper investigation. Maybe there was still some traces of poison left.
I am also skeptical about the legality of what Seb and Julia were doing, despite them making a point that it was written into their lease, and that Thomas committing suicide (which he didn't...) was just an unforeseen tragedy.
This was a very long review, but I really felt I needed to vent. With some careful thought, they could have fixed some of these illogical plot points and made this a superb movie.
Oddly enough, the message that the movie is portraying in a heavy handed way is worth the price of admission - mind your own damn business!