New York Times - 01/17/2006
"The performers are convincing, sometimes heartbreakingly vulnerable."
Surveillance is often used by directors who are keen to add a voyeuristic touch to their work, and has been cleverly used as a plot device in classics such as BODY DOUBLE, THE CONVERSATION, and REAR WINDOW. In ALONE WITH HER, director Eric Nicholas (RIVER RATS) takes the theme to its logical conclusion, shooting an entire movie on cameras stashed in ingenious locations by the film's central protagonist, Doug (Colin Hanks). Doug is a dangerous loner who whiles away the hours by filming unsuspecting women on hidden cameras, ultimately developing an infatuation with Amy (Ana Claudia Talancon). But after Doug has wired up her home with cameras and microphones, he takes the ruse one step further, using the information he's garnered to align his tastes with Amy's in order to impress her at a "chance" meeting. Naturally, Amy thinks they have a lot in common after meeting him and they begin dating, which only spurs him on to greater surveillance-related depravity.
It's to Nicholas's inestimable credit that he doesn't fall into the trap of letting his clever point-of-view gimmick transcend the actual content of his movie. In fact, ALONE WITH HER is a fine 21st-century thriller that genre luminaries such as Hitchcock and De Palma would doubtless be proud of, thanks in part to compelling performances from Hanks and Talancon. But the director also manages to conjure up a palpable feeling of unease as Hanks's creepy character goes to extraordinary lengths to win the heart of his obsession, and adds just enough intrigue to keep viewers guessing how this cautionary tale will end up.
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