The Voyeurs

Movie Reviews | By on Sep 13th, 2007

The Voyeurs

Starring Prasenjit Chatterjee, Sameera Reddy
Written By: Buddhadev Dasgupta
Directed By: Buddhadev Dasgupta

Wow, my undergraduate film theory professor would have loved this film. A rare Indian/Bengali non-musical, renowned filmmaker Dasgupta takes an interesting dramatic look at two computer nerds living in Calcutta who meet a beautiful new neighbour – the absolutely stunning Sameera Reddy – and install a hidden camera to spy on her in her room.

However, the ever shy protagonist Dilip, who has never felt the feeling of love or the desire to marry, cannot bring himself to watch her take her clothes off, turning off his live feed each time she undresses. Eventually she realizes that she is being spied on, and Dilip and his friend Yasin run from the law. Up until this point, the story is quite mesmerising and rather interesting. It is a classic example of what feminist film theorist Laura Mulvey calls ‘fetishistic scopophilia’; the gaze of the two men is subjugated by the film viewer’s simultaneous gaze, that being the gaze of the male-dominant world. This is only enhanced by Reddy’s beauty, who Dilip likens to his favourite Bollywood Star Madhubala.

Unfortunately, after Dilip and Yasin get found out for their spying, the film starts getting messy. Yasin gets mistaken for a terrorist, and many of the film’s different plot threads really don’t get wrapped up or finished. The ending seems to be quite haphazardly put together, leaving far too many of the film’s ideas, especially that of voyeurism, relatively open and ultimately unsatisfying. While the film is very interesting and built around an interesting concept, there are far too many distractions from what the film should be centered around, and in the end it peters out in a way that brings down the film as a whole.

Bottom Line: An interesting concept that is not seen through fully, and suffers due to inconsistency.
Rating: NR
Running Time: 115 minutes
Overall Rating:

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