Review: ‘Body of Evidence’

A courtroom drama built around the charge that Madonna's body is a deadly weapon with which she 'fornicated' a man to death, this showcase for the singer-thesp as femme fatale is more silly than erotic.

A courtroom drama built around the charge that Madonna’s body is a deadly weapon with which she ‘fornicated’ a man to death, this showcase for the singer-thesp as femme fatale is more silly than erotic.

The ever-self-inventing one plays the g.f. of a rich older man with a heart ailment who is found dead after a night in the sack with her. That he’s left her $8 million and had cocaine in his system points the finger of guilt straight to the ‘cokehead slut’ – as the man’s secretary (Anne Archer) calls her.

Defense attorney Willem Dafoe makes the unforgettable opening argument that, ‘It’s not a crime to be a great lay,’ but soon discovers that Madonna isn’t into old men exclusively. Dafoe just can’t say no and the pair’s several sex bouts are the film’s main action set-pieces.

Trial begins a mere 20 minutes into the story, and most of the running time alternates between courtroom testimony – much of it racy – and Madonna-Dafoe face-offs.

Decked out in a short platinum blonde haircut and fancy clothes that easily rip easily, Madonna has little trouble passing as a predatory tramp whose credo would seem to be, ‘I f—, therefore I am.’ Dafoe holds his own manfully. Portland locations give the pic’s exteriors an appealingly wet, cool feel.

[On homevideo and outside the US, pic was distributed in an uncut 101-min. version.]

Body of Evidence

Production

De Laurentiis. Director Uli Edel; Producer Dino De Laurentiis; Screenplay Brad Mirman; Camera Doug Milsome; Editor Thom Noble; Music Graeme Revell; Art Director Victoria Paul

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1993. Running time: 99 MIN.

With

Madonna Willem Dafoe Joe Mantegna Anne Archer Julianne Moore Jurgen Prochnow
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