Though it was lensed at the same time as Dangerous Liaisons, Milos Forman’s Laclos adap didn’t see the light of day for a couple of years. It’s easy to see why Valmont’s makers dodged a box-office duel. The eeevil Close/Malkovich combo of Stephen Frears’ multi-Oscar-winner would eat for breakfast their counterparts Annette Bening (in her first big role) and Colin Firth, who seem more green than mean as the central sex-game schemers. What’s more, the heritage-cinema stylings look somewhat starched next to subsequent revamps of the same yarn (Cruel Intentions, Korea’s Untold Scandal). Still, on its own terms it’s a reasonable romp, with the leads’ thunder stolen by Meg Tilly as the married madonna Firth aims to turn into a whore. There’s certainly more emotion in her performance than in the ‘tragic’ denouement. Eroticism’s at a premium too, although Firth’s soggy-shirt moment will doubtless get Pride And Prejudice fans a bit sweaty.