Becky is a Los Angeles artist relocating to Eastern Europe. She allows a home renovation tv show to follow her to a remote town in Moldavia where she plans to purchase her new home. She chooses a run-down house that should probably be condemned. Becky feels she and her European soccer player boyfriend, Goran can handle it. Months later, the tv crew returns for the”after” episode. Becky and Goran have done an amazing job. As the crew begins to shoot video for the new show, they have several uncomfortable encounters with the villagers. The crew knows they were never welcome in town and they slowly begin to get the feeling they never should have made the trip, yet Becky and Goran seem to have adjusted just fine.
They’re Watching takes a unique idea and takes it in the direction of the Blair Witch Project. Unfortunately, it does not work. It opens awkwardly with a scene from the ending. It is out-of-place and makes little sense considering it uses the found footage, first person point-of-view. The film is billed as a horror-comedy. It is neither scary nor funny. The countless F-bombs are unrealistic, even for the most accomplished user of profanity. There is a musical score inserted into a few scenes; this is also extremely awkward. Found-footage movies usually do not have music accompanying a particularly touching or dramatic scene. Finally, the CGI effects during the big climactic battle between good and evil are simply overused.
They’re Watching has other things working against it. The story takes a long time to get going and none of the characters are remotely endearing. The nasty correspondent is one of the few bright spots because she is as mean as anyone else you might find in the world of television.
They’re Watching could have been a fun story but it never truly begins to develop into anything more than a tale about creepy locals harassing a group of stereotypical, arrogant Americans. By the time we discover their motives, we are not surprised and we just want it to end.
TRT: 94 minutes
Appropriate gore 6
Production Value 7
Final Cut Score 29 (58%)