A Perfect Murder

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(1998) ★★★

TCM: Sunday 27 September, 11.15pm

Radiant Gwyneth Paltrow is caught cheating on her Manhattan power broker husband Michael Douglas with shifty loft-space artist Viggo Mortensen. She doesn’t know that he knows. And Douglas, who treats his younger wife like an acquisition, plays the big bad cat to the illicit lovers’ mice. First he makes Mortensen an offer any sane man would refuse.

When Mortensen questions why he would murder Douglas’ wife, the businessman’s reply is brutally frank: “Bad genes and greed.”  Now Mortensen wants to know why Douglas wants his wife dead. He swots the query aside: “I appreciate your curiosity but my agenda is none of your concern.”

Douglas gives sardonic weight and a slyly comic delivery to his relishable lines and it is his cold, calculating performance that makes this diverting reworking of Hitchcock’s mid-50s hit Dial M for Murder so compelling. It’s slickly staged by Fugitive director Andrew Davis so that even though these seductively grubby characters plausibly inhabit their roles, the world they live in is theatrically glossy and vacuous. Idle hands…

Certificate: 15

Duration: 103min

IMDB – A Perfect Murder

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Other Showings Time & Date
TCM Monday, 28 September at 9:00PM