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The Watcher

 (539)
5.31 h 36 min2000X-Ray15
Keanu Reeves and James Spader ignite this action-packed thriller about a psychotic killer who torments an FBI agent by sending him photographs of the intended victim before each assault.
Directors
Joe Charbanic
Starring
James SpaderMarisa TomeiKeanu Reeves
Genres
SuspenseDrama
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio Languages
English
Rentals include 30 days to start watching this video and 48 hours to finish once started.
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Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

539 global ratings

  1. 53% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 22% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 13% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 6% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 6% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

JuliettaReviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 March 2022
2.0 out of 5 stars
not particularly good
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The watcher is a horrible serial killer who knows his victims because he watches them before he kills them. Nice, huh?! And he's played by Keanu Reeves. That was probably why I ordered it!
sandra fayReviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 August 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
A first class gripping thriller
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This is well worth the money. James Spader is excellent as the lead FBI agent. This is a relatively old film but the action and direction quality does not date it. A quality buy
Renata Tilson Lo-BiancoReviewed in the United Kingdom on 06 June 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Would recommend
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I like this film hence ordering this item. Good film to watch if one is into thriller type films and a good price too
H. TrivassReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 January 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars
What a fantastic film!
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I always like films where a typecast actor breaks free of their stereotyped roles!!
Well, this is one of the best!!!
Keanu Reeves is brilliant as the psychotic woman killer, who watches his intended victims, getting to know their routine so he knows when they are most vunrable. Then he photo's the woman and sends it to the police telling them they have 24 hours to find the woman before he kills her with piano wire!! (nice!!) The cop in charge of the case (James Spader) has been trying to catch this killer for a long time (he killed his g/friend in the past) so there is a lot of personal anger and revenge boiling inside him!
The cool thing about this film is that the "bad guy" is a major character who you get to meet fairly early on and see him quite a lot (unlike seven where the "bad guy" isn't seen at all until right near the end of the film. The murders in this film are obvious without being graphic (hence the reason it is only a 15 rated film) but it plays more on the suspense and build-up to each murder to get its fear factor!
This is an intelligent film, although the ending is fairly predictable (e.g. the bad guy loses) but the way it ends was very exciting!!!
Another good thing about this film is the relationship between the character played Keanu and James. It is intense and believable and you really start to wonder who really has the upper hand and who really is in charge! they have some electrifing scenes together!
Overall this is a brilliant film, superbly acted (great casting!) and masterfully directed to keep your attention!
A real "sit up and take notice" type of film!
A must see!
24 people found this helpful
W F HeyesReviewed in the United Kingdom on 03 April 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Old but good classic cat and mouse thriller.
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Still looks as good as it did on its release over a decade ago.
A cat and mouse thriller with a deranged Keanu Reeves teasing the troubled detective played by a convincing and brilliant James Spader.
Both at the top of their game in this chilling thriller.
Highly recommend.
3 people found this helpful
CMT346Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 July 2008
3.0 out of 5 stars
Watching The Watcher
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I came to The Watcher with relatively low expectations having never heard of the film before. The cheap price and other reviews tempted me and I'm grateful they did for, while The Watcher is a film with a number of flaws, it does have two significant redeeming qualities; James Spader's central performance and the unpretentious aspirations of the plot.

Spader plays Joel Campbell, a detective who has become central to a serial killer's theatre of cruelty and is paying the emotional and physical price for this unwanted attention. Instead of the cliched narrative of a maverick cop who insists on taking the case despite his flaws Campbell is aware of the liability he has become and hides away like a wounded dog. He has not totally given up hope, however, and reaches out for healing with a psychiatrist played by Marisa Tomei. Unfortunately it is the killer who finally drags an unwilling Campbell out of his twilight world and the suspense escalates around the identity, not of the killer, but of his victims and whether the fragile Campbell can excise the literal and psychological demons from his life.

There are problems with this film, notable the supporting cast have underwritten roles which cannot be resurrected from the forgetable. Marisa Tomei, while likeable, is a fleeting presence and Keanu Reeves does not convince as a serial killer. Only the script's construction of his character's ruthlessness allows the audience to suspend belief to the extent of 'buying' him as a worthy adversary to Campbell. They finally come together in a needlessly rushed climax which falls back on the worst conventions of movie law via a number of lazy plot flaws and continuity errors. It is a testament to Spader's efforts that the audience is sufficiently invested in Campbell to forgive these distractions and crave a satisfactory conclusion to the character's story. This is the key dicotomy of The Watcher - its worth seeing for Spader's outstanding and compelling performance which is delivered, however, within the context of a production that is not really worthy of his contribution. Recommended, therefore, but with reservations, this is a movie that deserves to be better known.
4 people found this helpful
john walshReviewed in the United Kingdom on 07 October 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Good
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Good actioner. Good cast .
Mrs. Pamela RogersReviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 August 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
Just because James Spader is in it
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James Spader was his usual excellent self. His voice alone makes the film great
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