HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Old Guard, The
Gumnaam
Disappearance at Clifton Hill
Sullivans, The
Piranhas
Love in the Afternoon
Black Water: Abyss
Wild Blue Yonder, The
All Hail the Popcorn King
Muriel, or the Time of Return
Selma
Great Locomotive Chase, The
American Anthem
Lion and the Horse, The
Druids
War of the Wizards
Onward
Doctor Faustus
Spite Marriage
Mask, The
Letter to Jane
Quick Millions
Dream Demon
Max Havelaar
Radioactive
Glastonbury Fayre
All Dogs Go to Heaven
Shoot Out
Da 5 Bloods
Sonatine
Kung Fu Monster
Secret Agent Super Dragon
Saint Frances
Boiling Point
Golden Stallion, The
Dragon Force
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch
Luck of Ginger Coffey, The
Junkers Come Here
Ladius
   
 
Newest Articles
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
   
 
  Body Heat Playing The Fool
Year: 1981
Director: Lawrence Kasdan
Stars: William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Richard Crenna, Ted Danson, J.A. Preston, Mickey Rourke, Kim Zimmer, Jane Hallaren, Lanna Saunders, Carola McGuinness, Michael Ryan, Larry Marko, Deborah Lucchesi, Lynn Hallowell, Thom Sharp, Ruth Thom, Diane Lewis
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: Ned Racine (William Hurt) is a Florida lawyer who in the summer heat, one of the hottest on record, spends his spare time picking up women for one night stands, never thinking anything about actually falling in love. That is before he meets Matty Walker (Kathleen Turner) when watching a band play an outdoor concert, and follows her to the beach where he strikes up a conversation with her. She warns him she is married, but he thinks she is playing hard to get and chats her up, though she walks away when he is distracted...

Not that such elusive behaviour will put off Ned, but as Matty observes in their first meeting, he's not too smart - she likes that in a man, as we will find out. Body Heat was Lawrence Kasdan's directorial debut after some successful screenplays, and as with many of his films he was keen to show a love of the classic Hollywood movies of yesteryear, in this case Double Indemnity. His unique selling point was that back in the nineteen-forties Billy Wilder wouldn't have been able to show Barbara Stanwyck naked and indulging in sex scenes, but in this he could show all those sequences which were left to your imagination in the vintage film noirs.

Unfortunately that was about all that was new about Body Heat, and while it may have gone on to influence a whole rash of erotic thrillers just as it had been influenced itself by what had gone before, watching it now it does not seem as fresh a take on ageing material as it once did. In fact, there was a sense of old wine in new bottles about it that was hard to shake, and the conventions Kasdan was paying tribute to were looking more like clich├ęs, which might explain why there's almost a curiously parodic tone to much of the movie. It's no surprise that Turner went on practically immediately to spoof her role here in The Man with Two Brains.

That's due to her just about staying on the right side of spoof in her performance here, and she steals the film from her co-stars, especially the dim bulb portrayed by Hurt, who might be able to put across his character's dumb lust, but makes it hard to believe he'd ever make it as much of a lawyer - or a conspirator. This was by design, naturally, but did have the plot dawdling around when the audience were way ahead of Ned, breeding impatience in the viewer when even if they had not seen the source, they were all too aware of where this was heading, and that Ned was blind to this impending doom was frustrating.

Certainly Kasdan was reckoning on you being as much of a fan of classic thrillers as he was, and he invited you to settle back and indulge yourself in all those earlier works now brought up to the eighties with a sultry mood. Matty remained hard to fathom thanks to Turner's expert playing in a film which fumbled the mystery slant when it was glaringly obvious to all and sundry what she was planning - essentially killing her rich, older husband (Richard Crenna) for the inheritance and setting Ned up as her fall guy - which may leave you restless if you were not content to see this play out precisely as you were expecting. Even the other characters around Ned such as Ted Danson's tapdancing lawyer can perceive what is going on, so the opinion of Ned that he deserved all he got for stumbling straight into his own downfall with both feet was undeniable. As with many Kasdan works, it was respectful to what had gone before, but didn't quite come alive as its own entity. Music by John Barry.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2605 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Lawrence Kasdan  (1949 - )

American writer and director with a gift for sharp, crowd-pleasing scriptwriting. Made his debut as a writer/director with the modern noir hit Body Heat in 1981, and turned in deft screenplays for blockbusters Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. His other most notable films as director are The Big Chill and The Accidental Tourist, while Silverado and Wyatt Earp were flawed but admirable attempts to bring the western back into fashion.

 
Review Comments (1)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
  Hannah Prosser
   

 

Last Updated: