A suburban thriller, featuring elements of teen culture, 'Disturbia' doesn't take itself too seriously, keeping the scares to a minimum but without being completely dull.

Kale's (LaBeouf) world comes crashing down when a car accident destroys the family life he once knew. Withdrawn at school, he eventually allows his anger to overflow when he flips and punches his teacher, resulting in him being expelled and later facing criminal charges. A sympathetic judge spares him jail-time but he is put under house-arrest, a fate that initially seems even worse to Kale.

After his supply of computer games and music is cut off, Kale soon discovers that there are more interesting ways to amuse yourself while home alone. He takes to spying on the neighbours from his upstairs bedroom, peering through his binoculars at the cheating spouses, meticulous gardeners and misbehaving children.

But one neighbour really catches his attention, Mr Turner (Morse) from next door. To all the world, he seems likes the nicest and politest man, but Kale believes that he is hiding a deep, dark secret. He manages to convince his spy-accomplices, school friend Ronnie (Yoo) and girl-next-door Ashley (Roemer), that he is onto something but his mother Julie (Moss) is totally charmed by her helpful neighbour and refuses to think badly of him, much to Kale's disgust.

'Disturbia' is not the kind of fast-paced thriller that is all about the action and intrigue. It meanders to its climax, delving into various subplots along the way - like growing up, falling in love and life's many changes - giving it a fairly light feel for most of the movie. The young crew of Shia LaBeouf, Sarah Roemer and Aaron Yoo are impressive in their mixture of straight acting and moments of comic relief, but David Morse overshadows them as the seemingly-good neighbour, who is a little too perfect for their liking.

This one probably won't have you clutching your cinema arm-rest in fear but you're not likely to fall asleep either.

Linda McGee