Bad Influence


Curtis Hanson's early '90s spin on murderous desire may fall short of, say, Hitchcock's Strangers On A Train. But it stomps all over recent wannabes like The Talented Mr Ripley when it comes to nightmare-haunting queasiness.

James Spader is Michael, the office wimp befriended by slick, confident man-about-town
Alex (Rob Lowe). At first things go swimmingly, with everything Michael ever wanted dropping into his lap. But gradually he realises that dreams come with a price... And Alex aims to make him pay it in full.

Character-driven and pacy, Hanson's film lets Lowe mirror-image his charm and handsome blandness into something brittle and nasty (watch him eating an ice cream as a body's fished out of a lake). No doubt about it - this is Lowe's finest hour. Well, apart from that one he taped with those two girls...

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