After a one-night stand, a successful married man (Michael Ealy) finds himself entangled in a cunning police detective’s (Hilary Swank) latest investigation.
This neo-noir isn’t quite sure what it wants to be – an update of Fatal Attraction? – a distant to cousin to Body Heat? What it winds up being is a purposely sordid, ill-conceived thriller that gets bogged down by a tepid pace, predictable “twists” and an embarrassing conclusion that all involved should have objected to on the basis of lack of originality. Ealy is a sympathetic lead, yet he needed to employ more than one hang-dog expression to convey his character’s concern, while Swank is clearly slumming here. That this is her follow-up to the ill-advised The Hunt indicates no good scripts are coming her way or that she’s lost her sense of determining whether a script is worthy or not.
1 1/2 Stars
“Fatale” finds all the same tropes of every other crime thriller and puts them to use in this predictable story. The twists and turns come as no surprise, but Swank’s performance elevates the film as we see her like we never have before. The tone and atmosphere of the film is spot on, but if you’re looking for any originality, you’re not going to find it here.