“Gone Girl”, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, and “The Girl on the Train” are some of those mystical thrillers with a female lead that continue to fascinate viewers. It’s almost like a reincarnation of Ms Marple or Hercule Poirot happening in the cinematic universe. Therefore, it would not take long for small or big film studios to repeat what happened with “The Ring” and “Scream” – to offer us a parody of it.
Anna (Kristen Bell), for three years already, mourns the death of her daughter. She continues seeing her image as if her child was still alive. When the handsome neighbor Neil (Tom Riley) just moves across Anna’s house with his young daughter Emma (Samsara Leela Yett), it seems life may go back to normal. Why not? If she could maintain a certain level of relationship and recreate the sense of normalcy in her life? It seemed that everything would go according to her plan, except the sudden arrival of Neil’s girlfriend. It would not be that bad for Anna if her neighbour’s girlfriend would not get killed right by the window, from where, right from her house, Anna witnesses. The whole problem is, nobody believes the woman.
Created by Hugh Davidson, Larry Dorf and Rachel Ramras, “The Woman in the House Across the Street from The Girl in the Window” is an entertaining parody of our beloved genre. Especially the concept, which if executed well, is never boring to rewatch. Obviously, having Kristen Bell attached to play the lead role may suggest we are about to watch a comedy. And it was at some point funny, but not as much as you or many others would expect. Mostly, it was a serious film with a few interesting lines that were quite good, I must say. The mini-series shot for Netflix should not be taken seriously, otherwise, you will dislike it right from the beginning.
In fact, it has a good approach with a few loopholes that are expected. Even though it has a predictable concept, each episode is short enough for you to be able to sit through. Obviously, the most interesting question in the film is who is the killer? And if the murder did occur, what led to it? Anna is an already well-explored character in the original version of the film, therefore, it did not have to be developed thoroughly. We know Anna has issues and she is afraid of rain due to the rainy day that claimed her daughter’s life. Of course, that specific narrative was as dull as it could get. But again, at the risk of repeating myself, this series is not meant to be taken seriously, so flaws like this are always welcome.
That being said, “The Woman in the House…” is a good show that does not deserve receiving all the negative reviews from acclaimed film critics. In fact, it’s fun and entertaining, engaging and relaxing. It’s like an escape from an everyday routine to the gate of mystery. So don’t be discouraged and see it on Netflix. You don’t have to pay a single penny for it, because it’s part of your subscription. And I assure you, it is more fun than expected. Just give it a chance.