Film Reviews:

My Little Eye

(Marc Evans, UK, 2002)

My Little Eye posterThe idea of a murderous Big Brother house is obvious, and difficult to do in an original way. My Little Eye makes little use of the premise, and settles for being a very standard slasher film, tricked up with pseudo-CCTV camerawork, and shadowy green night footage.

Five contestants are recruited through the internet, and sent to a desolate house in the snowy Canadian countryside. They are all cardboard cut-outs: jock, slut, good girl, bad boy, loner. Despite dawdling for a full hour before the murders begin, we learn virtually nothing about them, a failing which an ironic viewing of The Breakfast Club doesn't excuse.

The housemates are only shown on the internet, are unguarded, and are allowed movies, computer games, even dope. This scenario makes My Little Eye less like Big Brother, more like the female students who charged subscribers to watch them on the web 24-7. As such, it has no satirical insights on celebrity culture or reality TV, and instead tries to instill a fear of the internet's freedom.

The conceit that the film is web cam footage is ridiculous. The web cams used must be incredible, given that they are able to pick up clear, visible footage in a candlelit room. The cameras constant whirring zooms and mis-framing get annoying very quickly. Instead of seeming artless, they come across as incompetent. The acting also gives the lie to the reality angle. Its not bad - especially considering what the actors are given to work with - but its obviously acting.

Every plot twist is telegraphed, and loud bursts of industrial noise on the soundtrack show desperation to get a reaction. If only this had been filmed Blair Witch style, with the actors kept unaware of what was about to happen, and forced to improvise, it could have perhaps had something of interest.

Adrian Horrocks

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