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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 <email@example.com>
Not a bad movie at all, but not a great one either.
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.
5 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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