This comatose chiller freely borrows plot elements from STRAW DOGS (1971), CAPE FEAR (1962 and 1991), and FATAL ATTRACTION (1987).
Life is good for architect John Davenport (Scott Valentine), fresh-scrubbed wife Diana (Katherine Kelly Lang), and their two perky offspring. But a dark secret from Diana's past is about to disrupt their harmony.
Although warned of the jail release of her ex-husband, D'Arcy (John Enos), by erstwhile parole officer Garrett Hill (David Keith), the Davenports are unprepared for the ex-con's campaign of terror. Battling to reclaim his former mate, jailbird D'Arcy hooks up with a prostitute named Faith (Mary
Fanaro) and crashes a Davenport barbecue, stalks the couple within the limits of the law, deposits a scorpion in the kids' bedroom, and scotches the sale of their home with one of his unscheduled appearances. Meanwhile, D'Arcy secretly slays Faith's pimp, Peaches Munroe (Jason Larimore).
Driven to the brink, John welcomes the chance to accompany Hill to D'Arcy's motel room for a confrontation but is stunned when Hill ostensibly pumps the jailbird full of lead. Framed for slaying Peaches Munroe, John catches on too late that he has been suckered by D'Arcy (alive and well enough to
kidnap Diana) and by D'Arcy's prison buddy Hill.
By the time John is cleared and able to force information out of D'Arcy's accomplice, D'Arcy already has involved Diana in a convenience store robbery, during which he shoots a clerk. Cuffing a highway patrolman who questions him about stealing Hill's vehicle, John continues his pursuit of the
fugitives. Tracking them to an abandoned housing project, John loses his weapon but drives the car into the unbuilt home to tackle his psycho tormentor. Having cleverly rigged the joint with explosives, John (and Diana) escape through a trap door after disabling D'Arcy with a can opener. The
explosion kills D'Arcy.
It is impossible for the audience to identify with the wholesome Davenports, who have the dimensions of a set of paper dolls called "Typical American Family: 1990s." With no inspired plot reversals or richly conceived characters, this movie baits the audience with the nastiness of the madman's
methods. But there is no sexual tension between D'Arcy and his insipid love object, and the film talks itself to death as the rambling felon waxes philosophical about the role of the renegade in society. Viewers may wonder why the psychopath didn't bypass criminal assault and simply talk his
righteous opponent to death. (Graphic violence, extreme profanity, sexual situations.)
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- Released: 1995
- Rating: R
- Review: This comatose chiller freely borrows plot elements from STRAW DOGS (1971), CAPE FEAR (1962 and 1991), and FATAL ATTRACTION (1987). Life is good for architect John Davenport (Scott Valentine), fresh-scrubbed wife Diana (Katherine Kelly Lang), and their two… (more)