Davis and Dermot Mulroney star in a thriller that spins but never turns into anything more than cheesy popcorn
It’s hard to decide what kind of cheese “Deadly Illusions,” a distracting thriller starring Kristin Davis and Dermot Mulroney who stream on Netflix, is exactly soft and overripe the way it looks, which begs the question of when it’s cheesy and when is it clumsy? From the movie’s stupid title sequence – with constantly angry music – to its final teasing scene, the film seems to wink at the genre, but for what purpose? Think too much about it and “Deadly Illusions,” written and directed by Anna Elizabeth James, can even turn out to be annoying. What does it say about the class? About trauma? How do women – the characters, but also the director – see each other?
But why bother our pretty little heads with these problems when we sit back deep on the couch and talk about the story of Mary Morrison, her near-perfect family, and the pert and innocent (or is she?) nanny, the Hired to giggle Keep an eye on Mary and husband Tom’s late childhood Young’uns as Mary delves into her latest novel in a bestselling series
Mary writes books with titles like the one in this movie: Menacing Yet Vague By the time the movie begins, she has withdrawn to her lovely neighborhood – all concrete, modern lines and floor-to-ceiling glass doors and windows – to be a mother who’s staying at home Davis brings some kind of nervous energy to Mary It’s not fair, but accurate, to think of her as her “Sex and the City” character Charlotte, with a dash of more intelligence and gravitas
Unfortunately, her publisher only wants one more volume from this blockbuster writer Charlotte holds her own even after a new assistant to her editor pushes her pretty hard about her privilege when Tom admits they could use the extra batter that was offered to her her fate is sealed
Set early on with the “Illusion” part of the title Mary reminds best friend Elaine (Shanola Hampton) that part of the reason she doesn’t want to start a new book is because she isn’t herself is as soon as she starts writing Hmm. Is that a warning that the worlds of fiction and fact may merge? That it is unstable?
To ease Mary’s anxiety, Elaine puts her friend in touch with a quality childcare outfit.After a montage of nanny interviews – some crazy, some sad – Grace comes into her life
Fact and fiction seem to intertwine so we can’t tell when Mary imagined events or if they actually happened – like steamy dalliances with the incredibly perfect grace that softcore girl-on-girl tease feels like like a step backwards, more “Red Shoe Diaries” than “Basic Instinct” ”
Greer Grammer does a capable job of being too good to be true Indeed, the three clues leave us guessing about her propriety. Does Mary break boundaries? Will Tom seduce or be seduced? Is Grace a Trojan sitter – all sweetness and ease until she overtakes the family? That’s what Elaine suggests
Grace is as blonde as Mary’s brunette, and there is a tango built into her interactions that is “innocent, who is exploiting” There are times when Grace has total doubts about her personality and other times when she is Got to worry about her that’s an accomplishment. Too bad the script doesn’t manage these tensions better. Somewhere underneath this film is either a brilliant dark comedy or a knowing, annoying riff about the power dynamics of two women cautious and drawn to each other
In “Deadly Illusions” there are tons of tropes that function as red herrings, breadcrumbs for the truth or MacGuffins All of this underscores the debt that “Deadly Illusions” owes Hitchcock. There is Grace’s braided braid, a shower scene, deadly scissors that are fatally used There are nods to Brian De Palma too. It is enough to make the viewer dizzy
Weltnachrichten – FI – Review of “Deadly Illusions”: Kristin Davis engages the wrong nanny in a silly, sexy thriller