A bored adolescent finds horror lurking in his suburban neighborhood in this updated, youth-oriented adaptation of Alfred Hitchcocks Rear Window.
After he was involved in an automobile accident that took the life of his father, Kale (Shia LaBoeuf) becomes understandably unhinged, slugging a Spanish teacher who provokes him, causing him to spend the summer under court-ordered house arrest with an electronic-monitoring device clamped to his ankle. When his exasperated mom (Carrie-Anne Moss) limits his video-game access and deprives him of television, he picks up a pair of binoculars to amuse himself. First, theres the foxy, brazen blonde (Sarah Roemer of Grudge 2) who moves in next door, then theres the creepy, menacing neighbor (David Morse) who may be luring women into his house who are never seen again. Could he be the elusive serial killer, the subject of nightly newscasts?
High-tech voyeurism reigns over building a Twinkie tower as the already-traumatized teen and his geeky buddy Ronnie (Aaron Yoo) devise more snooping equipment for what starts out as a surveillance game until it becomes deadly serious.
Written by Christopher B. Landon and Carl Ellsworth, its chilly and contrived, geared to our gnarly Internet paranoia, as director D.J. Caruso (Two for the Money, Taking Lives, The Salton Sea) amps the suspense, albeit with soundtrack thunder for shock value.
But its likable, low-key 20 year-old Shia LeBoeuf (Bobby) who propels the picture; he also stars in the upcoming Transformers and Surfs Up and has recently been signed to be Harrison Fords sidekick in the fourth Indiana Jones movie. According to LeBoeuf, Hitchcocks ghosts were everywhere on Paramounts Stage 18 as cameras inexplicably moved on their own.
On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, Disturbia is a tense, terrifying 7, becoming a violent psycho-slasher-thriller.