Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Peepers (2010)

Once again, Peepers, a film I saw on Sunday at the Just for Laughs Film Festival, is a proof that in Canadian cinema, there are no taboo topics. As a matter of fact, Peepers adds itself to the growing list of smartly written Canadian comedies that deal with sexual desire.

A group of peeping toms led by Steve Sherman (Joe Cobden), a loser who lives in his mom's basement, enjoys taking Montreal's chilly rooftops during the night. Through the unshuttered windows, they want to have a glimpse at a “hottie hookup,” a “panty party” or a “big booty buffet”. However, the peeping toms' life is about to change when Annette Fulvish (Janine Theriault), an academic interested by "male gaze", enters the domain of peeping, which is dominated by men.

At the same time, some members in the group begin to question their interest for peeping. Bobby (Ricky Mabe), the youngest member of the group, wonders if there's a new way to explore one's sexual desires. As for Neal (Howard Bilerman), he's contemplating dating Vivian (Quinn O'Neil), a woman living across his apartment that he's peeped. As for Steve, he feels that he has to fight against Annette for rooftops supremacy in the activity of peeping.

For a comedy about sex and "male gaze", Peepers surprises, because Seth W. Owen, Daniel Perlmutter and Mark Slutsky know how to talk about sex without making idiots of themselves. In fact, nowadays, it's pretty hard to find a comedy that brings us into the desires of the leading characters with a certain effectiveness. While the story has no difficulty to put it plainly that Neil wants to date a woman for real, it has some difficulty to expose Steve's and Bobby's psyche for anyone who's not specialized in psychology. After all, what would Steve be only interested in watching beautiful women? Is it because he has difficulty to seduce any women? In a nutshell, Peepers is what you'll get if you unite Atom Egoyan, one of Canada's greatest directors, and Canadian scriptwriter/actor Mark McKinney.

Finally, although Peepers is the baby of three men, the film doesn't put white gloves when it comes to casting a glance on the rapport between many men and their sexuality. For that matter, expect to see a honest script that uses men's (and women's to a lesser extent) flaws in order to make you laugh.

Rating: 4/5

Origin:Canada (2010)
Length:90 minutes
Screenplay:Seth W. Owen, Daniel Perlmutter and Mark Slutsky
Director:Seth W. Owen
Starring:Joe Cobden, Howard Bilerman, Paul Spence and Janine Theriault

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