(director: Luis Prieto; screenwriter:David Loughery; cinematographer: Juan Miguel Azpiroz; editor: Federico Conforti; music: Tom Howe; cast: Cameron Monaghan (Chris Decker), Ridley Bateman (Willow Decker), Frank Grillo (Sebastian), Lilly Krug (Sky), John Malkovich (Ronald), Sasha Luss (Jamie), James C Burns (Detective Lane), Dat Phan (Kiju), David Madison (Briggs), Ash Santos (Lisa); Runtime: 92; MPAA Rating: R; producers; Claudia Bluemhuber, Veronica Ferres, John Malkovich, Luis Prieto: Lionsgate/Saban Films; 2022)
“Its attempt at the erotic cools.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
A femme fatale story shot in under 21 days and directed in only a so-so way by Luis Prieto (“Kidnap”/”White Lines”) and blandly written by veteran writer David Loughery. Its attempt at the erotic cools, while the story remains predictable, the acting is only fair and its execution is under par. It fails in its effort to be another “Fatal Attraction.” Please note, everything here has been done better before.
The wealthy upper-class divorcee Chris (Cameron Monaghan), separated from his wife Jamie (Sasha Luss) and not living with his daughter Willow (Ridley Bateman), is a techie home security millionaire who is depressed and lonely. At a supermarket he picks up the attractive former model and cocktail waitress Sky (Lilly Krug), and they have a one-night stand. When he’s with Sky, he’s injured after beaten up by a guy trying to steal his parked car, and the lower-class working girl (who probably arranged the mugging) volunteers to nurse him when he returns from the hospital in a wheel-chair and moves in with him in his chic Montana mountain lodge.
Chris worries about her when her crazy roommate (Ash Santos) is mysteriously found murdered in the seedy motel they live in and she begins acting odd. It’s immediately apparent even to a blind person that Sky is not a good person. But it takes Chris about 30 minutes to also see that.
But Sky will reveal her true colors and schemes to steal his money, as she holds him hostage and threatens to kill him unless he turns over his portfolio to her. From there on things only move along in a predictable manner, as the film seems empty and lifeless and unimaginative.
The most entertaining highlights come from John Malkovich, in a minor part, playing Sky’s sniveling ratty pervert landlord. The other good supporting role has Frank Grillo playing Sky’s snarling sleazy crime partner brought into the vic’s house after he was tied up by Sky (in an unconvincing & hammy performance).
REVIEWED ON 2/24/2022 GRADE: C+