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Watching the Detectives
Watching the Detectives
Actors: Cillian Murphy, Lucy Liu, Josh Pais, Mark Harelik, Heather Burns
Genres: Comedy
UR     2008     1hr 34min

Neil (Cillian Murphy) works in a vintage video store and wishes his life could be as exciting as the movies he watches night and day. Enter Violet (Lucy Liu), a real-life femme fatale who brings enough adventure into Neil'...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Cillian Murphy, Lucy Liu, Josh Pais, Mark Harelik, Heather Burns
Creators: Christophe Lanzenberg, Nathan Barr
Genres: Comedy
Sub-Genres: Comedy
Studio: Peace Arch/Genius
Format: DVD - Widescreen
DVD Release Date: 08/12/2008
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 1hr 34min
Screens: Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 1
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

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Member Movie Reviews

Reviewed on 7/17/2016...
I was a little sceptical this film would develop into something interesting as I watched the opening scenes, but it came into its own and had me laughing out loud by the mid-point.

It's silly, dorky, and will keep you guessing, just like Neil, as Violet plays her vaguely illegal "games". Interestingly, this film also shows some of the most emotionally mature conflict resolution I've seen in a romantic comedy. No shouting or door-slamming or flouncing off to sulk like five-year-olds. Just honest talking. I found that aspect quite refreshing.

There's enough adventure/danger here to make this story spicy. I'm not a huge fan of "date movies", generally finding them insipid and sappy, but this one was well worth my time.

It's certainly a bonus that both the leads are very hot and end up more-or-less naked in a few scenes! The use of sexuality in this film didn't feel exploitative or just jammed in to gratify viewers, but had an honest sensuality that fit well with the character development.

Quite a good off-the-beaten-path romantic comedy! Pick this one up if you usually dread gooey/bland romances. 3.5 stars.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

3.5 stars -- completely unpredicable but doesn't go far from
Larry VanDeSande | Mason, Michigan United States | 12/26/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Lead actors Cillian Murphy and Lucy Liu carry "Watching the Detectives," which probably started as a screwball comedy but ended up morphing into something more akin to slice of life or fantasy. Murphy is a video store owner hopelessly tied to vintage film and a group of losers that pose as his friends and hangers on at the store. Liu, an unconventional beauty, comes to the store one day and, upon entering his life, changes everything about it.

This runs about 90 minutes but never varies far from its beginning with the sexy Liu consistently surprising, and often turning inside out, her male counterpart with her twists, turns and tricks. She specializes in surprise attacks, you might say, where the otherwise straight arrow Murphy consistently falls for the gags. It's some fun while it's going on, maybe even more than some, but it doesn't wear well. I could hardly remember a thing about the film two days later than what I've said in these two paragraphs.

Still, the strong leads by the principals lift this above the ordinary. Good production values and occasional flamboyant art direction helps too. This is an offeat story about a couple that goes places most film don't and is unpredicatable all the way. I watched this the same night I saw a big budget, star-studded Hollywood extravaganza where I knew everything that was going to happen 10 minutes after it started. Ninety minutes after "Watching the Detectives" started, I couldn't say that about this one."
Funny and smart
Geraldine Richardson | Managua, Nicaragua | 05/03/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"You cannot judge a book by its cover. I was not expecting much out of this movie but I was really surprised to find Murphy has a real talent for comedy. I laughed throughtout the whole movie. I thought the script was smart and very funny, and the performances were fresh and unexpected."
Frigging Funny
Elizabeth | Out of this World | 05/20/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Loved "Watching the Detectives!" Quirky romance! Lucy Liu's character is a hoot in the ways she goes about to test Cillian Murphy's character to see whether he is a good guy or not and whether she should invest time in him. Cilliam Murphy rocks as usual -- a most versatile and amazing actor. See the film, have a laugh."