Chloe - A-list stars give class to B-movie erotic-triangle thriller
Atom Egoyan’s glossy, chic, wilfully perverse Chloe starts off as an intriguing psychological drama – and then veers off course into lurid B-movie territory.
A remake of French director Anne Fontaine’s 2003 erotic-triangle drama Nathalie, Egoyan’s film stars Julianne Moore’s as a well-heeled Toronto gynaecologist who suspects that her professor husband (Liam Neeson) is cheating on her.
To confirm her fears, she hires up-market call girl Chloe (Amanda Seyfried) to put the prof’s fidelity to the test and then report back with all the lascivious details. As the experiment unfolds, however, this peculiar triangle develops all kinds of unexpected kinks…
To begin with, Chloe is pretty faithful to Fontaine’s original film, which starred Fanny Ardant, Emmanuelle Béart and Gérard Depardieu in the roles played by Moore, Seyfried and Neeson.
About two thirds of the way, however, Egoyan jettisons the French film’s teasing subtlety and turns his movie into something resembling a late-1980s/early 90s direct-to-video erotic thriller.
Chloe’s stars give the movie far more class, of course, and Egoyan’s keen eye for architecture means that it always looks fabulous. Indeed, the married couple’s ravishing glass, steel and stone modernist house (in reality Toronto-based architect Drew Mandel’s Ravine House) is as irresistible as Seyfried’s eponymous Chloe – and plays a surprisingly key role in the plot.
Released on 19th July. Read the full review.
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A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.