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The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window [2022] ‘Netflix’ Review: It Goes Downhill Rapidly

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Netflix’s The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window (TWITHATSFTGITW) is one of the wordiest titles in recent memory. The first expectation from a show of this sort would be that it will aim to parody elements of any film you can remember. Movies that come to mind include The Woman in The Window and The Girl on The Train. As it is a parody/spoof of the genre, if you watch this with the aim of finding more and more shows, you will.




The parody can help excuse the obvious twists that you would expect to see and the dark comedy elements add that layer of uniqueness to this Netflix offering. This forced (and often flat) dark comedy is the only thing fresh in this show that can manage to give you an opportunity to click every single box on a checklist for psychological thrillers. 

The last two episodes, where the dots start coming together to let the suspense rise, borders on the bizarre and takes the story to a place that may make you regret watching it. Hence, one can safely say that it goes downhill rapidly. 

Also, Read: The Woman In The Window [2021] Netflix Review – Predictable Hitchcockian Thriller Dwindles While Trying To Outsmart The Viewer

(TWITHATSFTGITW) has an amazing writing team (Rachel Ramras, Hugh Davidson, and Larry Dorf). The trio has sprinkled gems of attention-capturing lines throughout the miniseries’ run time. For example: 

When your past is so present, how can there be a future? You’re just stuck in the present with your past. 

I’ve gotten so used to nightmares I’ve almost forgotten what it’s like to dream

To get to the bottom of something, sometimes, you have to remind yourself that if you don’t risk anything; you risk everything. And the biggest risk you can take is to risk nothing. And if you risk nothing, what you’re really doing is risking not getting to the bottom of something. And if you don’t get to the bottom of something, you risk everything. 

These lines serve a purpose to shed light on Kristen Bell’s character and her motivations. As Anna, a character who is dealing with personal loss and a lack of drive, she claims that she knows what she saw. With the knowledge of our lead, the constant questions of reality and imagination, too, are asked.

The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window 2022
@Netflix

This is that unreliable narrator who cannot be trusted. Would you trust someone on screen who constantly enters flashback mode and stands outside a school in a bathrobe over her pyjamas? No. Hence the risk, as she has to get to the bottom of things herself.

Like every thriller, there are hints thrown that make you not believe what you see, to avoid being led down the rabbit warren. 

Red Herrings dominate and help you remain intrigued. The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window’s first few minutes sets up that mindset. Tara Timpone, Jennifer Van Goethem, and Stephanie Willis’s edits bridge things together in a way that convinces you to believe that something is real. 

It is these few minutes within the episodes that make or break a show in the age of streaming. Director Michael Lehmann drops in voyeurism, spying on people from a window (just like Rear Window) and makes you ask questions that keep you in beyond the first few minutes. Throughout the show, we even see what drove Anna to become what she is today.

Also, Read: In From The Cold (Season 1) Review – A Show That’s Essentially Black Widow And Mission: Impossible On Steroids

The Rear Window element is updated, and the lead isn’t shown as someone who is a chronic window peeper who notices something is off. However, social media plays a role with Lehmann brilliantly managing to mirror basically anyone with a phone, a social media account, and the internet. Media is indeed an infinite reflection of society as the miniseries borrows elements from real life and real-life gets inspired by reel life. 

With a cumulative run time of just over 200 minutes, it could have been presented as a film. However, The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window has eight tiny episodes that give you the impression that you are making good progress with the show as it moves closer to the end. 

Representation is fulfilled as the series has an Asian character, two characters of colour, and a reversal of the traditional portrayal of the bartender/stripper roles in digital offerings. 




While I did praise the writers for some good lines, there appeared to be some holes that took away from this miniseries. Hypopituitarism helped one film pull it off, but it wasn’t touched upon in this series. Did one character have superpowers? They may have done so to leave room for the audience to think that it was yet another figment of Anna’s imagination, but no.

Kristen Bell portrayed Anna with such elan. She smiles to pretend that all is well and her deranged look as she slashed away at the fourth wall successfully portrayed her as a grey character that could not be trusted. As the central character, it is all about her and she is the reason the show remains watchable as her performance can distract you from the run-of-the-mill elements of the genre. 

Nami Melumad’s music lends a nursery rhyme feel to proceedings, especially in the title sequence as we see the show title pop up on a window with droplets of water all over it. Ring around roses is the song that comes to mind when listening to the score. The fact that the innocent tone gets a tad sinister by the second only lends weight to the miniseries’ thriller aspect. Was that meant to be a hint? Is innocence a mask? 

The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window is something to watch if you are in the mood to catch a quick TV series in one sitting. 

Kristen Bell’s acting is the bright light, and the surprise may catch casual audiences off guard. Unfortunately, it’s rare that anyone flicking through Netflix would stop on this show for its acting. There are way better options for the genre available on the platform itself.

The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window (2022) Official Trailer

The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window Links: IMDb, Netflix

 

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