Bedroom Window/C+,B+
Anchor Bay/1987/113/ANA 2.35

    Preposterous plotting and mindless character motivation weigh The Bedroom Window down like a pair of cement shoes. It starts off with reasonable premise: A cheating couple get caught in secretions of their own making. While witnessing a violent sex attack, the married socialite fears exposure of her illicit night. Her window  intervention helps scare the attacker off, but shreds of guilt annoy her like lingering particles of food from a bad meal lodged between her teeth. The plot turns on her minor pangs of conscience. Perhaps, given enough time and film, character motivation could have slowly built to the point where The Bedroom Window takes us, but it's not recorded on this film. The lover takes a serious misstep in cavalier fashion and sets in motion a whirlpool of events. Even a noir novice could predict the outcome from twenty yards away in the dark without the aid of contact lenses.

What should we do next? ©Anchor Bay

    Likeable Steve Guttenberg never seems right for a noir fall guy or an action hero. His Terry Lambert may be patently stupid, but another actor may have found ways of communicating some redeeming character traits. This guy plays to the fifth power of dull. French femme fatale Isabelle Huppert does her best to get her tongue around the noir idiom. She's a cold fish all right, but she fails to ignite any sparks with Guttenberg. Not a big surprise. Elizabeth McGovern is the victim turned girl investigator. Throw in a couple of plodding detectives and one sinister looking rapist on the prowl and the cast wades its way through the murky waters of The Bedroom Window.
     Credit writer/director Curtis Hanson with giving the film and good look and solid pacing. Who would have thought Hanson would be the guy to deliver a seminal neo-noir like L.A. Confidential. Hanson does manage to inject more tension than the plotting should allow, even if his timing cheats with abandon.
    Delivered in clean anamorphic images, The Bedroom Window is effortlessly consistent good looking DVD. A very slight softness emphasizes a sense of film rather than video. Contrast range provides excellent detail in shadowy garages or bright office environs. Skin tones vary nicely. The mono soundtrack is adequate.



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