Yes, it’s an “older” movie, but it had been languishing long enough in the bottom of my Netflix queue, so last night I watched it instead of doing one of the other dozen or so things I should have been doing.
Here’s my take;
The movie is surprising in all the not typical ways. Billed as a thriller / mystery with a steamy sexual relationship as its center, what we have is a movie where the twist is pretty much expected, the sex is steamy but stunted and short lived, and the best parts are the hard to decipher stylistic additions that change this from a odd thriller to an artsy thriller.
First, the sex (because I know that’s one of the biggest draws). The sex is hot, good, a bit raw, and there are some elements that are dazzling in how real it all seems. Meg Ryan is naked y’all and she isn’t the bubbly pixie from her rom/com days… this is an adult woman with “twisted” sexual appetites. (Twisted is in quotes because despite what the movie seems to want to tell you, women masturbating, enjoying oral, and being voyeuristic isn’t really that uncommon or that twisted.)
Next: The twist. (No, I won’t give it away). The best part about this movie is the dysfunctional relationships that seemed to be nothing but jagged pieces of the puzzle of life, trying to press against each other hard enough to fit. Which is perfectly apt. Yeah, you can sort of figure out the twist… but the surprising thing is that you spend more time thinking about all the other little things that build into the twist and therefore the end is still satisfying. There are layers of symbolism and when you start asking yourself if random shots hold deeper meanings or clues, you know the movie has done its job.
A few other things:
The symbolism and the use of the color red in this movie is great.
If you have read “To the Lighthouse” you will get the film on a whole deeper level.
The use of cinematographic cut aways and New York as a character itself, is done very well.
Kevin Bacon is very good as crazy manic.
Be prepared, the language is harsh, the sex graphic (even if it doesn’t last long), and the murder scenes are grisly. In short, the movie is precisely what you expect a twisted thriller / sexy suspense movie to be.
Post Script: … it was based on a book! Another addition to the great and mighty “must read” list…..