Thursday, June 17, 2010

Fatal Attraction. A-

A pretty lady who suffers from lunacy terrifies a man, his wife, and daughter after the man falls victim to a terrible temptation. Can one night stands come back to haunt you? In Fatal Attraction, yes sir. Actually it's more like a two night stand, but you get the idea. If you make a mentally disturbed woman think you love her, she won't forget you. That's what Clint Eastwood had to deal with in Play Misty for Me and Michael Douglas suffers from the same predicament in this movie directed by Adrian Lyne. The thrills in Fatal Attraction escalate quite a bit in the last half hour, but before that the movie is a perfectly reasonable, slightly creepy psychological drama. That's where the movie is at its best. But when it becomes a sheer thriller it gets more frightening, but also more predictable. I mentioned Play Misty for Me and should note that the two movies have many similarities. But while Fatal Attraction waned as it went on, Misty simply grows stronger. And that's why I think it's a better picture. When a movie is really good for the first half but ends badly, you don't look at it with as much appreciation. Still, the fact that I'm giving Fatal Attraction such a high recommendation shows how good the first two-thirds really are. And I admit that the finale was creepy and did make my heart beat. But like Dead Calm, it succumbs to that typical Hollywood problem of sacrificing creativity in exchange for familiarity.

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