6.2/10
6,443
55 user 33 critic

Bad Influence (1990)

Michael, a wimpy young executive, is about to get pulverized by a jealous boyfriend in a bar when a handsome, mysterious stranger steps in--and then disappears. Later that night, while ... See full summary »

Director:

Curtis Hanson

Writer:

David Koepp

On Disc

at Amazon

1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rob Lowe ... Alex
James Spader ... Michael Boll
Lisa Zane ... Claire
Marcia Cross ... Ruth Fielding
Rosalyn Landor ... Britt
Tony Maggio Tony Maggio ... Patterson
Palmer Lee Todd Palmer Lee Todd ... Naked Woman
Kathleen Wilhoite ... Leslie
Sunny Smith Sunny Smith ... Waitress
Susan Lee Hoffman ... Karen, Woman in Bar
Jeff Kaake ... Willie, Man in Bar
Christian Clemenson ... Pismo Boll
Charisse Glenn Charisse Glenn ... Stylish Eurasian Woman
Jay Della Jay Della ... Chez Jay Bartender
Inger Lorre Inger Lorre ... Band Member
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Storyline

Michael, a wimpy young executive, is about to get pulverized by a jealous boyfriend in a bar when a handsome, mysterious stranger steps in--and then disappears. Later that night, while jogging, Michael runs into the stranger on a pier. He introduces himself as Alex, and the two go out to an under- ground club. Within a matter of days, Alex wheedles his way into Michael's life and turns it upside down, and Michael doesn't realize that Alex is a dangerous sociopath until it's too late. Written by Denise P. Meyer <dpm1@cornell.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 March 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cattive compagnie See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$12,626,043
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color (DeLuxe)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

David Koepp wrote the screenplay on spec at a time when he didn't even have an agent. See more »

Goofs

Lowe wore a glove on one hand to smear blood on the wall of Michael's apartment. In the following scene, the glove switched hands. See more »

Quotes

Alex: [picking up his knife] Now I'm going to show you
See more »


Soundtracks

WHO'S LAUGHING NOW
Written and Performed by Skinny Puppy
Produced by David Ogilvie and Cevin Key
Courtesy of Nettwork Productions Ltd./Capitol Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Not a bad movie at all, but not a great one either.
20 May 2011 | by tpaladinoSee all my reviews

I enjoyed this movie very much, which is why it got seven stars from me, but it's by no means a fantastic or transcendent experience. It does it's job as a thriller ably, and it's worth watching.

The good: You do care about the characters, and James Spader and Rob Lowe are both fantastic actors who are on the top of their game here. It's interesting to see Spader play a guy who isn't super cool and self assured for a change, and he handles it well. Lowe channels a bit of Patrick Bateman and creates a great GQ sociopath. The supporting cast is quite good as well, however this could very well have been a two-man film, as you can fit the dialog of all the other characters in the movie combined onto maybe two sheets of paper. The director also had a great eye for style, as the locations, clothing and music were gorgeous and perfectly suited to the era, and gave the film a great deal of authenticity.

The bad: I'm not entirely convinced why Spader was so quick to discard his fiancé (who was beautiful, rich and from all indications a very nice person that cared for him a great deal). The film never really sets up any kind of conflict or apprehension between the couple to justify Spader's truly rash behavior. Yes, I get that he wanted a taste of the bad-boy life that Lowe was a part of, but he seemed to throw it all away far too easily and willingly. For the type of character that he was, I'd expect a little more internal conflict, moralizing and apprehension to go along with a decision like that. It just seems like his descent was inexplicably rapid and left a lot of questions unanswered. Beyond that, I think the ending (or last 30 minutes or so) could have been done a little better.

The good does really outweigh the bad, and the movie is genuinely worth watching if you're a fan of the genre. Don't expect a Michael Mann film, but you can definitely get some solid entertainment value out of it nonetheless.


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