Volume 91, Issue 96

Tuesday, March 31, 1998



T&A is TNT in new film

By Neil Malhotra
Gazette Staff

The suspenseful thriller comes in all sorts of packages, but always leaves viewers at the edge of their seats. Wild Things packages a group of characters who feel they have planned out the perfect way to extort eight million dollars from one of the local women. The movie combines numerous twists and turns with a lot of sex. One question remains right until the end: "Who is going to come out with loot?"

The story is based around four characters: Sam Lombardo (Matt Dillon), a guidance councillor who is also the town gigolo; Kelly Van Ryan (Denise Richards), a school girl with a crush on Sam; Suzie Troller (Neve Campbell), a social outsider looking for revenge on Sam; and Ray Duquette (Kevin Bacon), the detective on the case. The four are mixed in a web of deceit in South Florida in an effort to extort the money from Kelly's mother, Sandra (Theresa Russell).

The performances given by these actors are nothing special. Dillon makes his character unbelievable and irritating to watch. He appears way too laid back in critical situations.

However, one role played phenomenally well is of Ken Bowden (Bill Murray) – the shyster lawyer Sam hires when charges are pressed against him. Murray adds a great deal of humour and he brings all the right elements to the money-grubbing sleeze. Director John McNaughton continues the successful relationship he developed with Murray on Mad Dog & Glory. Murray steals his scenes and provides the most enjoyable 15 minutes of the movie.

Despite the overall poor acting, the movie keeps you interested with a well-written plot. Although many of the twists are foreshadowed and predictable, the viewer is still left with a desire to see what exactly does happen. Stephen Jones' screenplay is strong, but it is full of clichés.

Wild Things had a great deal of potential to become a great movie, but unfortunately, poor execution makes the movie average. The writers brought all the right elements to create a good suspenseful thriller: a group of characters with a variety of motives, sex, deceit and shockers. Wild Things is still worth checking out.

Gazette file photo

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