The Boy Next Door (or, the Boy Next Snore)

Jennifer Lopez plays recently betrayed teacher, Claire, who has a one night stand with her 19 year old neighbour that quickly turns to obsession.

In a film in which this guy is supposed to be 19 and this girl can’t get a break, the story doesn’t go well from the start with stilted, terrible dialogue as Noah moves in next door to Claire and becomes instantly enamoured with her, probably because she’s a teacher and he’s a 19 year old student – we go into that at great length, with it being mentioned every scene.

It takes badly cooked chicken for Noah to make his move and Claire goes from “no stop” to “oh my god” in a matter of seconds and never really recovers from its jaw droppingly bad execution.


It turns out that Noah isn’t all there – he turns obsessive and begins to stalk Claire in this “tense psychological thriller” that is less tense and more dense as it takes mystifying leaps of logic over gaps of reason that viewers could fall down.

Suffice to say, Claire isn’t happy with this turn of events, regretting everything and finding herself in a deadly game of cat and mouse and it gets worse when Noah joins Claire’s English class, bringing his creepy charm with him.  As Noah gets more and more obsessed (flashbacks help with this, of course), he ingratiates himself further with family whilst dealing with his anger issues… and, boy, is he angry what with angry hitting things, angrily being angry and being friendly with Claire’s son, Kevin, who lacks friends.

Somewhere, deep down in the idea of this film, there’s probably a good idea – a story about consent, abuse of trust and the boundaries of authority – but, whereas Notes on a Scandal was a superb example of this in the psychological thriller genre, The Boy Next Door tries to go the Fatal Attraction route, without ever committing to it.

Despite having Jennifer Lopez, Kristen Chenoweth and John Corbett doing their best to deliver the mind-numbing dialogue their given, it’s a dull film, poor realised.



The Quest for Cheap Music Continues

Okay, so I’m onto my second record player and it’s another charity shop bargain… well, I think it is, considering it sounds a ton better than the first deck I bought and cost me less than a five.

0Daft things like the plastic lid stays up of its own accord, so I’m no longer juggling a disc, a lid and Lord know else just to protect my inexpensive, but still cherished (mostly) vinyl.  The needle lowers slowly on the vinyl, thanks to a little lever.  It’s like magic.

Aside from that, it really does sound clearer than the Goodman’s I was clearly slumming it with (but without, wouldn’t have started the madness that has ensued).

I now have far too many records – I’m not talking hundreds, that’d be silly and I wouldn’t have any where to put them all.  I’ve got “a collection”, though, and a random one at that.

I’ve been to a record fair in Hull and bought three, but most of them have come from local charity shops and have been things that have… caught my eye.

0-1Amongst the purchases have been The Best of David Bowie (covering 1969 to 1979), Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.  Sure, none of them are pristine, but the most expensive (Bowie) was a fiver and the three came to £7.50.  Can’t argue with that.


Through vinyl, and away from streaming media, I’m rediscovering a love of music, especially stuff I grew up with and discovered at a later date.  I’ve got a wishlist of LPs I want, and there’s bound to be more coming my way as I trawl through charity shops, second hand record dealers, record fairs and everyone’s favourite auction site.