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Something A LOT different for Amanda Seyfried....6.5/10
IheartCali588224 May 2010
This film reminded me of the 90's wave of erotic thrillers. It's got all the elements, including a healthy dose of softcore sex scenes which surprised me because Amanda Seyfried has such an endearing, innocent look about her. But she's such a good actress though that this doesn't prevent her from convincingly playing the role of seductive call girl Chloe. Julianne Moore plays Catherine, a gynecologist who suspects her flirtatious husband (Liam Neeson) is having an affair with one of his students. While at work Catherine observes Chloe entering and exiting hotels with several men so she can make a pretty good guess at Chloe's profession. Catherine decides to use Chloe as bait to see if her husband would submit to the temptation of an affair with Chloe.

And even though that is the basic storyline, there is so much more that is left unsaid; things Catherine thinks she knows but doesn't know about her husband, things Chloe knows about Catherine that Catherine herself doesn't even know; and in the middle of it all, the viewer who finds out we didn't know much at all about it all. The audience is pretty much kept in the dark as to what is really going on with Chloe until one small scene that immediately switches the direction of the movie. It's not one of those hokey melodramatic twists, but will definitely have you playing back the entire movie in your mind because it sheds everything in a new light. Chloe brags at the beginning of the film, in a voice-over narration, that she has the gift of intuiting what people want and need without it being said. She can be all things to all people. And unfortunately for Julianne Moore's character, Chloe is exactly right....just not in the way that you might initially think she is.

What makes this movie good is that it has layers. Just as in real life, people are inevitably much different than what they appear to be on the surface. In a lesser film, the characters and plot would be one-dimensional and by far less interesting.
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Textbook Egoyan
Max_cinefilo8918 July 2010
If anyone was suited for remaking the French film Nathalie, it was Atom Egoyan, whose deeply twisted and occasionally perverse studies of sexuality, expressed through an apparently cold directorial eye, go hand in hand with a script that emphasized words over images (though there is a bit more flesh in the English-language transition). Hence the rather brilliant Chloe, whose prime accomplishment lies in its being less showy and pretentious than the director's previous foray into erotic secrets, the ambitious Where the Truth Lies.

Set in Egoyan's home town of Toronto, Chloe tells the story of the eponymous call girl (Amanda Seyfried) who is hired by gynecologist Catherine Stewart (Julianne Moore) when the latter starts to suspect her husband (Liam Neeson) is having an affair. Chloe's job is to casually approach him and see if he falls for her charm, thus indicating his propensity for adultery. However, as the girl's reports get more and more graphic, Catherine realizes she has put herself in an awkward position, one that it will be difficult to get out of.

A fascinating hybrid between psychological drama and erotic thriller (there's a vague hint of Fatal Attraction throughout the movie), Chloe is a rarity due to its attempt to analyze sex and its consequences without necessarily resorting to openly titillating imagery (a characteristic Egoyan shares with another Canadian maestro, David Cronenberg). The only downside of this approach is the same flaw that was much more evident in Where the Truth Lies, namely a deliberately slow pace that affects the thriller aspects but enhances the emotional poignancy, something that comes off as a paradox given the seemingly cold subject matter.

Furthermore, there is no coldness to be found in the carefully crafted performances: Neeson and Moore play the troubled couple with conviction, especially when things start getting more complicated (Moore's suspicious wife is a tour de force turn that should have received some award recognition), but the heart of the film lies, quite predictably, in Seyfried's hands, and she rises to the challenge by proving that she can do Big Love-style quality work on the big screen, embodying a complex, intriguing character light years away from her roles in Mamma Mia! and Mean Girls.

Overall, Chloe is a very good movie: sexy without being gratuitous, psychological without getting pompous and, like its title character, delightfully surprising.
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Solid erotic thriller even if predictable
BernardoLima23 May 2010
When David (Liam Neeson) misses his flight home from New York and, as a result, the surprise party his wife Catherine (Julianne Moore) has planned for him, Catherine is forced to swallow her disappointment and any suspicions and return to the waiting guests. Reading a text message sent to David's phone the following morning from one of his female students, Catherine's fear grows. More suspicious than ever that David is having an affair, Catherine seeks out Chloe (Amanda Seyfried), an escort, hiring her to test David's fidelity.

Chloe is a very solid thriller. Extremely engaging and incredibly entertaining, this story is ultimately about human nature and instincts. The film really grabs your attention and visually, it's quite a feat. The minimalistic sets and the way it was shot give this film a really modern and slick look. I feel like I should warn that there's quite a bit of nudity and somewhat graphic scenes but nothing outrageous or out of place.

Moore was absolutely terrific, she has proved her value already but here she delivers possibly one of the best performances of her career. Seyfried was quite a surprise. Her performance was subtle but very efficient and she seems a very promising young actress. Liam Neeson was not nearly as good as he usually is but it's understandable considering his wife died during the shooting of the film.

As I said, Chloe is a very solid and well done film. Unfortunately it has one major flaw, the predictably of the plot. I saw the twist coming from a mile way and I think any avid movie-goer will too. Still, it was a great watch, very entertaining and extremely well acted. Worth seeing.

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'I must find something, no matter how small, that I can love...'
gradyharp15 July 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Atom Egoyan ('The Sweet Hereafter', 'Ararat', 'Where the Truth Lies') has a gift for setting up cinematic surveillance of private encounters and studying the results of an incident on everyone witnessing it. In CHLOE he has engaged the services of Erin Cressida Wilson to adapt the French film NATHALIE by Anne Fontaine to place it on this side of the pond. In the French version the successful actors were Fanny Ardant, Emmanuelle Béart, and Gérard Depardieu: for this version Egoyan has an equally superb cast to carry off this mysterious story with great success. The same question arises in both films: 'what is imagined and what is real?', and it is the getting there that makes this film so fascinating.

Catherine Stewart (Julianne Moore) is a gynecologist married to the successful professor of music David (Liam Neeson) and they have a stay-at-home hippie son Michael (Max Thieriot) who goes about his life much the same as his parents: there is superficial companionship but little in depth relationship. The marriage seems satisfactory until Catherine plans a surprise birthday party for David, a party David doesn't attend, and Catherine suspects David of having affairs, a fact that David apparently suggests by his flirtations with waitresses and 'help'. Catherine is shocked, but realizes that as she is aging this may be a normal situation in older marriages.

Catherine visits a bar, a private club for assignations, and there she meets Chloe (Amanda Seyfried) and eventually buys Chloe's services as a prostitute to meet her husband and then tell her all about the encounters. It is agreed that Chloe will be paid for her services and only go as far as Catherine instructs. From this point on Catherine and Chloe meet after Chloe has encounters with David and describes the acts of the encounters in vivid and lurid detail. Catherine is fascinated and continues to pay Chloe for on going encounters and subsequent voyeuristic descriptions. Catherine even has a one-night stand of her own with Chloe in an attempt to understand her husband's need for infidelity.

Despite the setup of 'private investigator and prostitute detective' the two women become friends. When Catherine realizes she has enough evidence against David to leave him there is a final encounter of the three (Catherine, David, Chloe, and even son Michael) that brings the ingenious surprise ending - an ending too fine to share as it would spoil the film for viewers new to the story. Each of the actors does a star turn - Julianne Moore, Amanda Seyfried, and Liam Neeson - and once again Atom Egoyan takes an implausible story and makes us think.

Grady Harp
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A sexual thriller with a wow factor
Gordon-117 May 2010
This film is about a doctor who suspects her husband to be cheating. She hires a prostitute to test her suspicion, which spirals out of control beyond anyone's imagination.

If there is a sub-genre called sexual thriller, "Chloe" would be the prototype. The plot works very well, it's very engaging. The sexual mystery and tension are captivating, and the copious nudity does not even come across as over the top or contrived. Just as you thought you guessed the whole plot, it twists in the most dramatic way. There is so much suspense, excitement and mystery to the story. "Chloe" is a very good film with a wow factor, that keeps me glued to the screen.
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Last night's review
Tronc2 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Saw CHLOE last night. I love all of Atom Egoyan's films and this was no exception. We were warned going in that the movie was going to be sexually graphic. While this movie was highly erotic it was done extremely tastefully. Other directors would have gone more and cheapened it. Toward the end I was afraid we were heading for another Fatal Attraction but fortunately did not go that way. This was Julianne Moore's movie, no doubt, and I am rather surprised at the amount of nudity she showed. And Amanda Seyfried was HOT! Liam Neeson is almost a footnote in this film but he shows what a professional he is to do a film of this type after his family tragedy. I think this was the most erotic movie Egoyan's done since Exotica. Highly recommended.
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an intense drama about sexual identification and fantasy
MisterWhiplash29 March 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Sometimes a story needs to just let its characters go where the situation takes them. A situation isn't always conducive to storytelling (telling a story vs. a situation), but in the case of Chloe it's the way to go. The situation here is this: a doctor (Julianne Moore) is suspicious, perhaps even certain in some way, that her husband, an opera teacher (Liam Neeson) is cheating on her. As a way to find out, or just out of curiosity as to what he'll do, he approaches a call-girl (Amanda Seyfried) who has a knack for fulfilling any client's desire. When Chloe asks this woman about her husband being the client, she says he isn't. Her job will be to approach him, simply, in a cafe and see what he does. But according to Chloe, an innocent conversation (him being "friendly" as he is with a lot of women) turns into something else entirely... or is it?

This situation unfolds in a manner that is less about the conventional 'what will happen to their marriage' than what will happen to Moore's character, and Seyfried's Chloe, in relation to one another. It's one thing to have a character having sex with one spouse, but then having it with the other is something else. But that's not even what Atom Egoyan, the director, is fully interested in (although the sex scenes, when they do come up, usually from Moore's gynecologist imagining what her husband has been doing - and then herself actually with Chloe, are the most seriously erotically charged ones seen in a while). His concern, as a storyteller with this 'situation' is what is in the mind, what perception does to a married couple over time.

Catherine can imagine David doing these things, and we as the audience accept this as what really happened because Chloe, as the in-charge girl of the fantasy, makes it so. What do we perceive as who's wrong or right here, or is there even that issue? Eventually the movie Chloe turns into an obsession kind of story, where Chloe becomes enraptured with Catherine and their tryst together. A third-act revelation (I hesitate to call it a twist) makes things a lot more clearer, but does it matter if one sees it coming (I didn't, but I can see how suspicions can be had right from the beginning). It's Egoyan's way of seeing these people in these situations, how serious everything is taken but how it doesn't become too trashy; only the music by Mychael Danna sees to make it more of a sleek erotic drama when it doesn't need it (the best music cue has nothing to do with him, but rather the cutaway from one crucial scene to the next where Catherine/David's son is playing a perfectly somber piece of piano at a recital).

One part of it is the camera, sliding along and pairing up the imagery in certain scenes (watch as Catherine is excited in the shower of the image of David in the botanical garden, their juxtaposition is interesting). But another crucial thing is the performances. Moore and Neeson deliver the goods, and we hope they always do (Neeson especially has a very hard part, despite the supporting role as the husband, since he has to reveal what is necessary for Catherine to perceive, not so much what is fully realistic), and the actor playing the son fares less well, though that may be due to him being underwritten (or just not well written enough). But it's Seyfried who comes away here the real winner; she's naturally sexy and appealing, and can convey Chloe's ability to play Catherine so well because it's what she does. She's younger but wiser when it comes to intimacy and the power of suggestion, and the details in her descriptions, in the writing and the acting, is totally solid. We've seen Seyfried try, and sometimes succeed, more or less with material (i.e. Mean Girls and Jennifer's Body), and here is where she really, fully gets to shine in a three-dimensional character.

We know the players and we know how it might turn out, but you can't be sure. Egoyan eschews a Fatal Attraction third act turn for something a little more dangerous and exciting. I wasn't sure if Chloe was nuts, or just got off on her own superior way of playing this family of bourgeois Toronto-ites. It's about knowing what we know, and what we choose to do with that information as a sexual partner, a lover, a person, a friend, whatever, and that intimate fantasy element. It comes close to trash, but it really isn't. Taking its flaws aside, it's one of the smartest adult (though not pornographic) thrillers in recent memory.
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Overall a good movie for any thriller or drama fans!
s-johansson-it21 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
At first I was worried that this movie would end up being the typical cheesy movie about betrayal and jealusy but after just a few minutes in to the movie I realised it was going to be much more.

The movie is about a woman that's convinced her husband is cheating on her, and in her pursuit of the truth she looks for alternatives way to find out if her husband, who is away on work for long periods of time, is capable of betraying her.

I won't go into more details on the story than this, and I don't think I need to. I will say this though; at times I thought I had it all figured out but I was wrong every time, and that's what made this thriller particularly interesting, as so many modern thrillers in this genre generally doesn'y deliver much excitement.

Very good acting, believable characters as well as an interesting development in the story. I really enjoyed this movie, and I think you will too. 8/10! .. and did I mention there is nudity? Enough said, watch this movie!
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Where's Shannon Tweed?
SiggieHolmes8 March 2010
Warning: Spoilers
A great cast are wasted on a pretty dire script. I suppose they thought they were making something insightful about the nature of trust or something, but it's a pretty average thriller which retreads the same path so many other thrillers have. I must admit I found it rather annoying that we are shown scenes that didn't happen (yes, I know none of it actually happened!). It would have been more acceptable to me if the scenes of Chloe's imagined relationship with the David, the husband (Liam Neeson) had been given a voice-over by her. That would have indicated that the action could have been taking place in her head.

It was very Hollywood, in spite of its pretensions to being meaningful. For example, Julianne Moore's character Catherine is worried that she's getting old, but this being Hollywood she's not allowed to look anything other than stunning for the majority of the time. Plus, she indulges in a bit of lesbianism at the drop of a hat because we all know that every woman has an inner lesbian dying to get out. Honestly, you could have cast Shannon Tweed in the role! Chloe's motivation seemed very vague. She's a prostitute, so I suppose we are meant to take that as shorthand for her being a DAMAGED PERSON. I came to the conclusion that she was after Catherine's wardrobe. Chloe wears endless pretty outfits (she seems to have a limitless number of coats) and has a shoegasm whilst being diddled by Catherine's son. She won't look at him, but fixes her gaze on Moore's shoes and clothes (she's being diddled in Catherine's bedroom btw).

It had a typical Hollywood ending, the outside influence who is trying to break up the family unit is killed. The only surprising thing about it was that she wasn't stabbed with the antique hair slide that we'd been shown several times. It reminded me of those yuppie-in-peril films of the late 80s/early 90s like Consenting Adults and Pacific Heights.
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Totally risible!
Maciste_Brother2 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
CHLOE is the most risible film I've seen since, well, WHERE THE TRUTH LIES. The story is totally whacked and one wonders who in their right mind thought this story made any sense: a spoiled rich gynecologist believes her husband is cheating on her. She suddenly feels invisible: her husband is having sex with one of his young students. Friends are dating young chicks. Her son his sleeping with a hot chick in his bedroom. People all around are boinking chicks. The wife suddenly realizes "Heck, I'm missing on all of the hot action" so she decides to hire a hooker, with the idea of seducing her husband to see if he'll sleep with her, but it's all a ruse really because she's the one who ends up having sex with Chloe the Hooker. Chloe invents all these "hot" stories of her sleeping with the husband, to dupe the silly wife; these stories are so hot the wife decides to have sex with the hooker, because the wife feels she's invisible and by having sex with Chloe it's like some transference thingy going on and part of the passion the husband is sharing with the hooker the wife thinks she'll feel it too.

Got that?

The logic in the story is so whacked, it had me rolling on the floor.

First of all, I can't sympathize/empathize with the wife's pain/grief. She's a wealthy spoiled woman who hires a young woman to trap her husband. Nice character.

Second, the couple is a corny couple. Who cares if they don't make it or anything about their happiness.

Third, the two women, the silly wife and the hooker, are shown as being total nut jobs: the wife is gullible and accepts every little detail the hooker tells her without any proof of what she's claiming is real and the hooker is shown as being mentally unstable in the SINGLE WHITE FEMALE kind of way.

So basically the degrading screenplay portrays these two neurotic women as crazy, conniving, manipulating, narcissistic and out of control with their emotions. They both end-up coning each other while object of the initial target, the boring husband, doesn't even figure in the story. The two scheming women end up looking like two monkeys fellating each other at the zoo. I wanted to throw peanuts at them to make them stop. The ending elevates the level of degradation when Chloe the Hooker sleeps with the son in the parents' bedroom and when they're found out Chloe the Hooker then tries to seduce the wife again, which is seen by her son. The wife, embarrassed, literally pushes Chloe away to her death. Nice.

Though the story hints at Pasolini's brilliant TEOREMA, the storyline is straight out of the 1970s Black Emanuelle trash epics. Well, I would rather watch any Laura Gemser flick than this risible piece of "serious" filmmaking. The sex scenes in CHLOE were not hot for one second. Just unconvincing.

When the wife suddenly realizes the truth with those fake encounters Chloe has been telling her, she tells the clueless husband what she did: that she hired a hooker to entrap him and that she also ended up having sex with her (and in turn became the cheater here), the husband shrugs it off as if it was normal and OK. Again, this is me on the floor laughing my butt off. If I was the husband, I'd ask the wife to seek professional psychiatric help. I mean, the money she spent on the hooker could have been spent on something more important, ya know, like a brand new flat screen TV for that ridiculously overly designed house of theirs.

Even though it's a remake of a French film CHLOE reminded me more of the trashy Italian film called DELERIUM starring Mickey Hargitay. Same insane logic in the storyline with the women being completely crazy and degraded. The excellent Julianne Moore needs to get better projects than this laughable & embarrassing stuff.
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