The surprisingly fun and satisfying thriller “See For Me” takes a standard home invasion premise to unexpected places, even if you must suspend disbelief and allow yourself to go along with the more corny aspects of the story. Director Randall Okita is skilled at setting the appropriate pacing and edge-of-your-seat tone, and the technology spin to Adam Yorke and Tommy Gushue‘s script makes this one feel different.
Sophie (Skyler Davenport) is a blind woman who is house sitting for a wealthy client when three criminals break into the house with the intention of robbing the contents of a hidden safe. In an unfamiliar environment and huge home that’s far out in the woods, Sophie doesn’t have access to quick help. The police are half an hour away, and all she hears are strange voices. Her only defense is a smartphone app called See for Me, which connects her to a person willing to “be her eyes.”
On the other end of the line is military veteran Kelly (Jessica Parker Kennedy), an avid gamer who takes these calls on the side. The two women must then work together via a video chat to navigate a potentially deadly situation.
It’s great to see a female-centered thriller with two strong women depending on each other. Kennedy and Davenport have a good chemistry, and their characters may not always do the smartest things, but they are savvy, quick thinkers. Both are in an unfamiliar environment, which takes the tension level even higher. The added vulnerability of Sophie being visually impaired and Kelly not physically being able to help charges up the emotional heft of the story.
One of the hardest things to get over is that Sophie is unlikable, stubborn, resentful, and unpleasant to a fault, even to the person who is trying to help her. These personality traits fit with the character’s strong independent streak, but the more details that are revealed about Sophie, the easier it is not to like her. It adds a different dimension to the story, especially when you want to see her defeat the intruders and get to safety — but she’s not really a person you’d ever want to be friends with.
The film looks very dark and shadowy and is dimly lit, but it gives a real sense of being there with Sophie. The sound isn’t as strong as it probably should be in a movie like this, especially since the protagonist relies a lot on the noises she hears versus what she can’t see, but it’s a minor criticism. Overall, “See for Me” is different, enjoyable, and well made.
By: Louisa Moore