6.4/10
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Watching the Detectives (2007)

A film noir buff has his life turned on end by a femme fatale with a big adventure in mind.

Director:

Paul Soter

Writer:

Paul Soter
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Cillian Murphy ... Neil
Lucy Liu ... Violet
Jason Sudeikis ... Jonathan
Michael Panes ... Lucien
Callie Thorne ... Marcia
Michael Yurchak ... Buddy
Heather Burns ... Denise
Mark Harelik ... Detective Barloe
Ali Reza ... Detective Lowenstein
Josh Pais ... Andy
Brett Gelman ... Glenn
Lonny Ross ... Eager Customer
Paul Scheer ... Annoying Customer
Richard Waddingham Richard Waddingham ... Dennis - Bald Giant
J. T. O'Connor ... Bald Creep
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Storyline

Neil, a self proclaimed film geek and owner of Gumshoe video, has always been content to live vicariously through his favorite films noir. But when he meets Violet, a real-life femme fatale, his mundane world gets turned upside down and the line between reality and the movies quickly begins to blur. Will Neil step up and embrace a life full of adventure or retreat back to his comfortable couch? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes love is stranger than fiction

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 September 2008 (Russia) See more »

Also Known As:

Liebe lieber ungewöhnlich - Eine Beziehung mit Hindernissen See more »

Filming Locations:

Bayonne, New Jersey, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Color:

Black and White (one scene)| Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In order to keep as authentic of an American accent as possible, Cillian Murphy didn't use his true Irish accent on set until the film finished shooting. See more »

Goofs

When Violet interrupts Neil's bath and he is supposed to be naked, he is wearing some kind of cloth to cover his masculine parts. See more »

Quotes

Jonathan: Did she have any wild mood swings?
Neil: No, she was... she was, you know, she was pretty consistently out there.
Jonathan: Yeah alright then, she's not bi-polar.
See more »

Connections

References Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Skunkified Monk
Written by Jon Greathouse (as Jon G. Greathouse) (ASCAP)
Courtesy of S3 Music and Sound
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very good little movie. Don't Know Why it didn't get a theatrical release.
17 December 2008 | by joestank15See all my reviews

Watching the Detectives - Neil (the very talented Cillian Murphy) owns a rundown video store that specializes in obscure B movies and film noir. His life consists of watching movies and chatting while his life goes nowhere. One day he meets an intense free-spirit girl named Violet (Lucy Liu) who plays pranks on him compulsively. The film contains many delightful nods to gumshoe film noir.

The plot is simple, and it seems like the sort of film that was made for film buffs, with more references than you can shake a stick at. It even feels like the sort of film I would make, and doubtless director/writer Peter Soter speaks from experience. The premise is enjoyable, as is the chemistry between Cillian Murphy, who is the show, and Lucy Liu. She perfectly plays the "crazy" girlfriend. She's like fire. Violet burns brightly, but often burns the gullible Nick with her pranks. Nick reminds me of me. And I love myself, and love Cillian Murphy, so this film really spoke to me.

The films message, which is to get out and enjoy life, might rub some film aficionados the wrong way for criticizing the wholeness of their lives, so their umbrage is understood, though unfortunate. I know fully well that screens are no substitute for real life and take every opportunity to do something else. They are a nice distraction when things are stagnant though.

It's just all in good fun, often very good fun. The shenanigans that Nick and Violet get into are just too much. I wholeheartedly enjoyed this film. Watching the Detectives is cleverly written, often very funny and quirky and idiosyncratic as hell. As this is the case, it's not for everyone but eons better than most of what has come out this year. I'm dismayed Watching the Detectives didn't get a full release. I suppose there aren't enough ironic film buffs out there and fans of Cillian Murphy, whose performance makes the movie. This and Breakfast on Pluto are a great set of companion films. Watching the Detectives gets an A-


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