Friday, February 14, 2014

Body Heat

In the midst of a blistering Florida heat wave, a bored small time defense attorney (William Hurt) takes up with a sexy seductress (Kathleen Turner) and is soon ensnared in an intricate scheme to murder her well-to-do husband (Richard Crenna) and collect on his life insurance policy. Lawrence Kasdan's Body Heat, his debut as a director, is a film that is so involving and so at home in its own perspirating skin that it invites that forbidden thought suggesting it matches and possibly outdoes those cold, sinuous noir classics it so clearly emulates. Hurt's outstanding, laconic performance adds to the movie's sweltering spell and helps reenforce the plot's many webs while Turner is no less impressive as the femme fatale who seems to be two steps ahead of everyone, audience included. The film is rounded out with strong supporting performers which include Crenna as the tough talking mark, Ted Danson as an animated assistant district attorney, and Mickey Rourke in his breakthrough role as one of Hurt's useful former clients.