The screws are tightened expertly in this suspenseful meller about a flipped-out femme who makes life hell for the married man who scorns her.
New York attorney Michael Douglas is happily married to the gorgeous Anne Archer and has a lovely daughter, but succumbs to Glenn Close’s provocative flirtations while his wife is out of town.
It appears that these two sophisticated adults are in it just for fun and sport, but when Close slits her wrists in despair over the end of the affair, Douglas knows he’s taken on more of a burden than he bargained for.
Douglas, in a family man role, seems warmer and more sympathetic than before, and well conveys the evasiveness and anguish of his cornered character. Close throws herself into the physical abandon of the early reels with surprising relish, and become genuinely frightening when it comes clear she is capable of anything.
Unusual credit to James Dearden for his (very good) screenplay ‘based on his original screenplay’ stems from the fact that pic is based on Dearden’s 45-minute film Diversion, which he wrote and directed in 1979.
[Pic’s original preview version, in which Close commits suicide using a knife with Douglas’ fingerprints on it, played theatrically in Japan and later on French TV, and was released on video in 1992.]
1987: Nominations: Best Picture, Director, Actress (Glenn Close), Supp. Actress (Anne Archer), Adapted Screenplay, Editing