Atom Egoyan directs Julianne Moore, Amanda Seyfried and Liam Neeson in this psychological drama where a middle-aged gynaecologist hires a high class younger prostitute to test her husband’s faithfulness.
I saw the original French Emmanuelle Béart version, Nathalie, on release and this variation is actually the superior incarnation. A great showcase for up-and-coming star Amanda Seyfried who vamps, teases and unsettles the film. The main thrust of the movie is watching her seduce different members of the family and us figuring out which hook-ups are real and which are fantasy or paranoia. So the film can be approached as a late reprise of the yuppie in peril sub-genre like Pacific Heights or The Hand That Rocks the Cradle or perhaps most pertinently… Fatal Attraction. Though the prositute you hire for your husband FROM HELL maybe isn’t the most vanilla or relatable hook for this form. Egoyan does rather commendably stick to stalking, mind games and temptations… rather than going the full bunny boiling, knife wielding lurch into violent mania. Moore is superior to the material but clearly attracted to exploring the sexual worth and experimentation of a straight laced, “dull” woman who has been defined as too old by society. Seyfried is surprisingly game as the manipulating enigma… delivering her best lead performance in this neat little gem.
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