The Last Seduction Blu-Ray Review
It sounds rather cliché but it is so true…they just don’t make them like the use to. This week sees the release of the controversial nineties film noir classic, some of you may be familiar with, The Last Seduction. A tale of greed, betrayal, sex and lust. Typical Hollywood topics then but with a fresh original approach that sets it apart from all the other run of the mill trash that is occasionally churned out to the masses.
Telemarketing manager Bridget Gregory (Linda Fiorentino) and her husband Clay (Bill Pullman) score $700,000 selling cocaine in order to pay off a loan shark. When Bridget asks Clay questions about how careful he was during the pick-up, he becomes agitated and slaps Bridget in a violent outburst. Immediately Clay knows he has made a big mistake. Bridget decides to flee with the money and moves to a small town near Buffalo. Clay sends detectives to track down Bridget and the money. However, when Bridget meets Mike Swale (Peter Berg) she uses his naivety to plot against Clay and keep the money with a ridiculous yet dangerous scheme.
The archetypal femme fatale is usually one that embarks on an ill-fated journey of manipulation and murder, who tries to scheme and lie her way through life driven by greed and money. However, in the case of The Last Seduction the audience instead has a anti-heroine to not only follow but more importantly root for. The character of Bridget Gregory lacks any redeeming character traits and makes it very apparent that she has no desire to obtain any, devoid of any morally-driven decisions, she only cares about herself and will not let any man get in her way. This is one of the many standout aspects of the film. The audience tends to like a goody two shoes in the lead but we are enthralled by the villain, this film preys on the viewers deepest most secretive temptations.
With another actress in the lead, the film may have failed miserably. However with Fiorentino in a career best performance we are happy to be led by her down any dangerous paths into deadly situations. Everything about her comes across as a unnerving quirk whether it be her enticing and instructive narrator-esque voice, or candid way of going about ruining people’s lives equipped with a menacing smile as if she is pleased with her herself for being so sinister. This is all complimented by Steve Baranik’s sharp script that builds up perfectly with subtle scenes that do not seem to reveal much until the final secrets start to unravel, generating further viewings of the film to notice all the hints that initially felt insignificant. John Dahl’s stylish direction is very effective as it is reminiscent of 1940s film noirs such as Double Indemnity yet feels original and fresh due to its modern take on altering gender expectations and occasional humorous look at the suburban lifestyle in small towns. Challenging these cinematic boundaries has not gone unnoticed too as one can see how these aspects have even influence modern thrillers such as David Fincher’s Gone Girl. Joseph Vitarelli’s great Jazz score also elevated the scenes creating a seductive but atmospheric dark tone to the film.
The Last Seduction Blu-Ray is the one of the many latest releases by Network who continue to unearth unfairly forgotten gems that deserve more praise and a bigger audience, with an amazing transfer to Blu-Ray and informative extras. The Last Seduction is a gritty, sexy and nostalgic crime thriller that holds your attention throughout and stays with you long after watching it.