How bad is it that it’s hard to know whether to feel sorry for the character that Amy Adams is playing or to simply think that she should be minding her own business and possibly living life vicariously through the TV or books or something that can keep her attention? Playing the part of a child psychologist that has an extreme case of agoraphobia, Amy Adams finds herself keeping tabs on the lives of others from the safety of her apartment, peering through the window to check in on them from time to time and see what’s going on. The unfortunate part of this is that once she believes that one of her neighbors has become her friend she’s convinced that when she sees her friend being violently murdered that things have taken a deadly turn. Even worse is when the police are called it’s revealed that the wife is not the same woman that she’s been talking to. And let the gaslighting begin, since here is where Amy’s character really starts to go off the rails given that it’s made clear that her medication makes her hallucinate, she’s an emotional wreck inside and out, and if there is something going on with the family across the way then she’s an extremely easy target given that she has clear mental issues that can be picked at with ease. If there’s anyone that’s even going to bother wondering why anyone goes for such an easy target, then watch a few thrillers and then step back into the conversation.
Those with severe mental issues are often easy targets for the less savory characters within any given society, especially if they have something that another person wants, be it riches or something else. But asking why this happens is kind of like trying to sort out why human nature is the way it is. There are numerous reasons that people do the wrong thing and seek to confuse and bewilder those that are highly susceptible to such methods, but in this movie, the reason behind such a thing isn’t clear since despite having a rather nice place and possibly being wealthy enough to keep herself taken care of, it doesn’t appear that the main character has a whole lot that people might want access to. What is clear is that the main character looks and sounds absolutely haggard before the murder even occurs, and she only gets worse as the movie continues forward, as her condition continues to worsen and her interactions with the family begin to grow even worse as they become kind of aggressive in their attempts to get her to leave them alone. That kind of makes one believe that there is in fact something going on, but that might not be as connected as the main character appears to think. It wouldn’t be the first time that the main character in a story had suffered a traumatic experience and blocked it out only to have it come racing back at some point.
The fact that the character is in a ‘dark place’ indicates that there’s something that happened a while back in her life that could have triggered a serious breakdown that has kept her alone and in the dark for a while and has been growing steadily worse as she’s tried to run from it with medication and by staying in her home. Agoraphobia isn’t typically something that a person is born with, as it can be triggered in various ways and can affect someone beyond their teenage years. It’s also been seen that women are affected by this particular phobia more than men on average, though it’s a serious condition for anyone that happens to suffer from it. But just looking at the trailer and the imagery that’s shown throughout, there’s something going on with the main character that has triggered this phobia, and it’s something that’s been coming for a while since her medication, her condition, and the fact that she looks drawn and quite miserable, makes it too obvious that she’s been fighting some internal battle, or running away from one, for quite a while, and she’s simply tired, worn out, and her mind is finally making her face it in a way that won’t be denied. It’s strange how the human mind works, it won’t always let memory be repressed, especially when the practice becomes too tiresome and the best way to heal is to come forth and admit what happened in order to deal with it.
That’s a theory anyway, and it might be completely debunked when the movie comes out, but until then it’s what I’m sticking to since the fact is that agoraphobia doesn’t just come on without a reason, though the various reasons that it happens can differ greatly from person to person.