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Wow, I am a little surprised by the rating. Only 5.3? Come on, this was
a good movie! Was it the best? No, but it's better than most I have
seen. If you were offered a million dollars, could the strength of your
relationship survive it? I really got into this movie, because I knew
how it would damage the couple's life. I think that they did deeply
love each other, but they mention how they were childhood sweethearts,
and kind of rushed into marriage. So, the point is, they've probably
never been able to question if they had feelings for anyone else.
Struggling financially is horrible. How far would you go to get some money? People will go the distance and sometimes take a front seat with the devil! "Indecent Proposal" goes all the way and shakes up human emotions. I really felt that this was a very good movie and should be watched. 5.3 is a little harsh, what was so bad about it?
Without doubt, the touchy theme makes this film worth watching.
However, your opinion of it will, very likely, be influenced by what your own reaction to the 1 million dollar proposal would have been if you were in the same situation.
The film doesn't condemn anybody. It just reveals the fragility of a relationship, despite the strong love that resides in it.
Does it really matters if this kind of indecent proposal is not a realistic scenario? The millionaire willing to give a million dollars to spend one night with someone else's gorgeous wife is a fantasy. The consequences are, however, real.
The film uses an extravagant trigger to create a convincing emotional crisis that many couples will recognize.
The message is that at the end, true love wins; an attitude that I would recommend to any loving pair, attained by jealousy and resentment.
Indecent Proposal is not the worst film I've ever seen. However, it is my
most hated film.
Indecent Proposal could have been a very thought provoking look at the struggle of love, fidelity and morality when money is offered, but in the far from expert hands of Adrian Lyne it's become a biased look at prostitution that's shot like an ice cream commercial.
Adrian Lyne is known for making films that involve some type of male to female dilemma: 9 1/2 weeks, Fatal Attraction et al. But, as in the two mentioned films, he always seems to take the male point of view. Woody Harrelson's character is the central character in this film. After Demi Moore sleeps with Robert Redford who does the film focus on? Him. We see his despair, his pain, not hers. She seems to take to prostitution like a duck to orange sauce. So what is Lyne saying? Is he saying its harder to become a pimp than to become a prostitute? That's the impression I'm getting.
Look at Demi's character before and after her night with Robert Redford. In all the scenes before she seems awkward and certainly not happy. In all the scenes after she seems to glow with confidence and contentment. What is Lyne saying here? Is it that money DOES buy happiness?
Also, the casting is an expert exercise in marketing. The concept of sleeping with Robert Redford for a million dollars is definitely one of the things that drew many women to this film. I think many women would do it for their taxi fair home and no complaints. Demi and Woody are also gorgeous enough to make it work. Imagine if the couple were black, Hispanic or any minority group and the rich man was some slobbish red neck - the film take on a much darker tone altogether.
I can understand why so many women liked this film, but the chauvinistic nature of this film is staring you right in the face. I'd suggest people watch the film again bearing in mind the points that I've made.
Adrian Lyne does what he does beautifully, whatever that is. The gorgeous look of his films hide a serious lack of depth and a rather Machiavellian knack for attracting us, the natives, with shiny pretty things. We fall for it every time, or almost, we couldn't swallow Lolita, oh no, he should have left Lolita alone and shouldn't have made that outrageous statement, remember? "James Mason was all wrong in Kubrick's version of the Nabokov novel" Do me a favor Mr. Lyne, stick to "Flashdance" and suffer all the way to the bank. Sorry, I lost myself for a moment. Where was I? Oh yes "Inidecent Proposal" Imagine that premise in the hands of someone with serious intentions. A young happy couple and the devil. The stranger who, incapable of bearing goodness and happiness, decides to destroy it. Aware of their needs, he presents a solution to their problems. He doesn't care for her, he cares about their destruction. Juicy stuff. But, although Demi Moore and Woody Harrelson are great as the perfect foil for the devil's designs, the devil is Robert Redford. Mr. Redford is a personal hero of mine, instead of resting in his laurels, Sundance, the environment, Ordinary People, Quiz Show and so on and so on. But, I heard him say in a Charlie Rose interview that he would like to play different characters, dangerous, dark but nobody offered him that kind of part. What about this one Bob? This was a part that could transform this pretty candy floss into a classic. It needed guts. Where was the darkness? I looked into Redford eyes and I saw Redford. I would have gone with him for much less than a million bucks because in spite of the fact that involved accepting an indecent proposal there was no danger, really. He allows himself to be Redford all the way. The indecency is in the title in the gimmick but not in the spirit. As a result none of the promises are fulfilled and we're left with a pretty inconsequential movie. Oh well, I hope Mr Lyne learned his lesson. One never bad mouths James Mason, okay?
David and Diana had been in love since college and married into a dream
life where both are happy and able to pursue their dreams together.
However they hit upon hard times when Diana's real estate work dries up
and soon the pair decide that the only option available to them is a
literal last throw of the dice with their last few thousand in Vegas.
Despite an early winning streak they end up worse than they started.
About to head off, Diana catches the eye of gambling billionaire John
Gage who uses her as a lucky charm to win another million or so.
Afterwards they get together to play some pool and Gage turns the
conversation to the idea of what money can and can't buy specifically
offering the Murphy's a cool $1,000,000 for one night spent with Diana.
When this film came out, the basic concept was enough to give it lots of free advertising by getting the nation asking itself "what would I do?" and all the hype over that allowed the producers of the film to avoid people finding out that there really wasn't much worth seeing passed this question. It should have been so different though, because it could have been a classic morality tale that went deep within the characters to see what is there. However it doesn't really do this and instead we are left with a rather vacuous affair that is given plenty of gloss but is essentially lacking in interesting things to say. The tensions between David and Diana never get beyond the level of strops and it never even makes an attempt at moral debate.
The fact that the characters are so thin doesn't help either. David and Diana are basic but the real failing is in Gage; he should be a rather sinister figure who plays with people like he plays with his money but instead he is just a twinkling eye and a sly smile in fact, he is Robert Redford. This is part of the problem because, although the material is weak, the cast cannot do anything to improve the situation. Redford is far too smooth and playboyish to really convince in the main role he cannot tap into any darkness or complexity and his failing is just one of the film's failings. Moore doesn't help either with a basic role where she doesn't seem to understand what her character is supposed to be feeling and therefore cannot convince in many of her scenes. Meanwhile Harrelson puffs and blows on cue but adds little. The support cast features turns from Platt, Cassel, Connelly and Thornton but aside from being recognisable faces they don't add much. Lyne directs with typical glossy style but he has no clue how to get deeper into the characters and story so instead just throws in lots of exploitative but empty scenes in the hope of somehow emotionally engaging his audience.
Overall this is not an awful film but it is so superficial and hollow that it is just bland and glossy. It only is made worse when you think of the potential it had to be a complex and insightful modern morally piece. Those happy with the substance and complexity of a slushy music video will enjoy it but the majority will leave it wondering what all the fuss was about and how such an interesting concept was so completely fouled up.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Not good. The movie differed completely from the book(Not that the book was exactly a classic but it really was very good.)
I guess Demi Moore was OK. Actually, I don't really remember to much about her performance one way or the other. However the big disappointment wasn't with Ms. Moore.
WHY did whoever did the rewrite decide to suddenly make the millionaire have a heart? (I'm referring to him as "the millionaire" because he also had a different name in the movie then the book version-just another change.)
People who didn't read the book obviously won't know anything's different but in the BOOK version this guy is much more ruthless as well as complex overall. He is also fascinating. The fact that such a big change was made in the movie alters the whole plot. It was almost like seeing a completely different movie.
I know MANY movies vary widely from the books. But I also thought Redford's character was a bit of a wimp. This ISN'T Redford's fault(He's a great actor and could have played ruthless well) but without those qualities he becomes just another dazzled man in love hence the story becomes just another cliché love story involving 1 woman and 2 men. That wasn't really the point of the book.
This could have been a lot better. Even if I hadn't read the book version I wouldn't have liked this all that much, but changing so much around definitely takes it, for me, a few points down.
INDECENT PROPOSAL is a great example of a great premise for a movie -
Would you allow your wife to sleep with a complete stranger for one
million dollars ? and it's not too difficult to understand why this
movie was so talked about on its initial release . Well would you ?
The one problem that the movie suffers from is that Robert Redford was cast as John Gage , the middle aged billionaire who desires the company of Demi Moore's character Diane Murphy . Robert Redford who aged in his mid fifties looks about ten years younger and who still female fans to this day . One can't help thinking that Adrian Lyne would have been far better off exploiting the premise further by casting a much more physically repulsive actor as Gage . Some defenders may claim that Redford equals good box office and certainly this movie did superbly as far as world wide receipt's go , but it's a movie whose main selling point must be the simple central idea and would have perhaps ended up a much better film . It's interesting to note that when women in their late 30s to early 50s answer the question " Would you ? " they usually end up replying " Robert Redford ! I'd go to bed with him for free " .
INDECENT PROPOSAL isn't a great movie despite the great premise and I found Lyne's directing style a bit too 1980s with a couple of scenes that are a bit too pop video for my liking but despite not being the greatest actors in the history of cinema both Moore and Woody Harrelson do enough to make the audience feel for their characters who find themselves in a dilemma . Yeah maybe it's Hollywood trash but it's engaging Hollywood trash
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For me, one of the most memorable and poignant lines from a movie, is when
David brings the divorce papers to Dede at the auction and just before he
signs them he says to her, "I know now that people in love remember the
things they do to each other. If they stay together, it's not because they
forget, but because they forgive."
This movie explores what can happen to even the most rock-solid couples when they allow money to make them do things they would never dream of doing otherwise. Somehow, when you're dealing with a monetary figure the size of $1,000,000 it's easy to forget that what you're actually doing to get that money is absolutely no different than what the girls on Sunset Boulevard are doing. For a much lower price yes, but it's still the exact same thing. In the movie, their love in the end was strong enough to overcome the damage they'd caused each other by doing this heinous thing, but I don't know that your average couple in real life could overcome it. What they'd done would always be between them.
Powerful performances by Moore and Redford, but the best and most surprising performance comes from Woody Harrelson. I didn't know he had it in him to show such a broad range of emotion. Quite a departure from his bartender role at Cheers! I absolutely love the movie's very appropriate theme song, "No Ordinary Love" by Sade.
Great movie for everyone, but is an especially important message to be obtained for those in love.
Mind-numbingly boring, utterly predictable and in the end simply
laughable. That pretty much sums up the disaster that is Indecent
Proposal. Starting with a decent premise the whole thing just unravels
and becomes a complete mess. Basically the story boils down to the
question, "would you let your wife sleep with another man for one
million dollars?" Here of course the answer is yes because otherwise we
wouldn't have a movie. Quite frankly, we'd have been better off if we
didn't have a movie.
Our married (and financially troubled) couple are played by Woody Harrelson and Demi Moore. They go to Vegas to get rich. Yeah, that'll work. Anyhow, a billionaire, played by Robert Redford, takes a liking to the wife and makes the million dollar offer. For one night with the wife he will give them financial security. The aftermath of that one night is what the movie is really all about. Unfortunately nothing in that aftermath is the least bit entertaining. The script is so predictable you can say the characters' lines before they do. The performances leave much to be desired. Harrelson would be better off sticking to comedies as this attempt at serious acting completely misses the mark. Anguish is not something he seems capable of portraying. And it is quite safe to say that Demi Moore will never have to clear space in her home for any Academy Awards. Why is she a movie star again? In a part that should be full of emotion she conveys none. Only Redford escapes mostly unscathed. He's appropriately slimy yet suave and clearly the best actor of the bunch. But he can't save this film. Awful script, lousy acting, plodding pace, zero entertainment...Indecent Proposal is downright awful.
Demi and Woody are married, but they're poor. They meet Robert Redford,
and he's REALLY rich. He takes a fancy to Demi, and since he's a
gambling man he makes the couple an "indecent proposal:" one million
dollars for a night with the little woman.
At this point you need watch no more of the film because you can put the details together in your sleep. Of course Demi is going to accept the offer. If she doesn't there's no first half of the movie. Of course it will affect Demi and Woody's marriage. If it doesn't there's no second half of the movie. And of course everything will turn out okay by the time the credits roll. If it doesn't, there's no happy ending for the sake of box office.
The absolute best thing you can say about INDECENT PROPOSAL is that Demi Moore looks good in a black dress. As for the rest... The script is incompetent, the direction amateurish, the performances negligible. I suspect Redford, Moore, and Harrelson blush and change the subject every time the film is mentioned. Do them--and more importantly yourself--a favor. Unless some one offers you a million... Miss It!
Gary F. Taylor, aka GFT, Amazon Reviewer
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