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Open Window (1989)

It pits the hero against floods, fire, a gun-wielding neighbour and a spectacular fall all because a banging window in a nearby flat keeps him awake at night.


Rupert Wainwright
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Lubo Barnett Lubo Barnett ... Swat team member
Roscoe Lee Browne ... Neighbor
Nancy Fish ... Barbara
Jack Jozefson Jack Jozefson ... Police Chief
Jim McKeny ... Chief Fireman
Lori Moore-Braneon Lori Moore-Braneon ... Swat Officer
Barry Neikrug Barry Neikrug ... Harold


It pits the hero against floods, fire, a gun-wielding neighbour and a spectacular fall all because a banging window in a nearby flat keeps him awake at night.

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Obvious delivery and a forced frantic energy limit the laughs from the simple scenario
26 September 2004 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Harold is an aspiring actor who, despite his bad memory for dialogue, is hoping to escape his dreary job and make it as a performer on the stage. The night before his next audition though, he cannot sleep properly due to the incessant banging of an open window in an empty flat several floors up from his own. Unable to contact the landlord for help, Harold is forced to try and do something himself – however who would have imagined that such a simple task would have involved such massive risks?

As a fan of short films I tuned in to this one with the intention of giving it the 20 minutes it requested in return for the hope that it would entertain me for the duration. The film starts interestingly enough with Shakespeare being spoken over cityscapes at night but, after this, it quickly because a rather obvious slapstick comedy that is worryingly light on laughs and all rather uninspired. The material sees plenty of manic pratfalls but there is not enough about them to really make me laugh loud enough. Events get big very quickly but they are not built on a good foundation of humour and they didn't take me with them – I should have been laughing ever more but instead I just lost interest with each step up.

Part of the problem is the writing of course, but the delivery doesn't help either. The film feels like it is forcing an urgent, frantic energy that the material simply does not have; this makes it feel like it is trying too hard and isn't confident in itself (rightly so). The delivery of the lead actor reminded me of Jim Varney in the Earnest movies – a comparison that would not be a problem if it were not for the fact that he made Earnest look subtle by way of comparison. It is not his fault of course, because the material demands it of him and he is only responding to that. The laughs don't come as a result of the forced delivery and the majority of the film fell flat.

It is not a bad film though and was a good try and will maybe please less demanding viewers who are in the mood for a dark knock about comedy but this was not me. It never gets the delivery right and, because it never got me smiling or laughing early on when events were small, it had lost me when the material goes to extremes. Not worth hunting down but maybe, just maybe worth a try if you laugh really easily and come across it on television some time.

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Release Date:

1989 (USA) See more »

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Chanticleer Films See more »
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