SHOCK reviews tawdry erotic psychodrama INDISCRETION.
One thing about loving horror and exploitation movies is that there’s no such thing as a guilty pleasure. Or at least there shouldn’t be. The love of horror is loving the arcane, the eccentric, the baroque, the fantastical and ridiculous and yes, the trashy.
And this writer has a huge appetite for trash. Huge.
And lately, the only place I get that hankering properly satisfied in contemporary cinema is via Lifetime thrillers.
The increasingly steamy cable channel just keeps pumping out modern melodramas and erotic – but not too erotic – thrillers for the prime time market. These are modestly budgeted, shot on video skeez-shockers, with plotlines wrenched from the headlines of supermarket tabloids. Lurid. Ludicrous. And, like all things that are bad for the body, totally addictive.
And I adore them all.
One of the most recent quickie trash orgy’s to spurt out of the Lifetime stable premiered last night and it’s a humdinger of a romp. It’s called INDISCRETION and it stars the lovely Mira Sorvino (MIMIC, HUMAN TRAFFICKING) as Veronica, a put-together therapist and super-hot wife to a tabloid-baiting politico (SAW’s Cary Elwes) who follows her loins into the heart of darkness.
When she encounters a smouldering artist (Christopher Backus, who is Sorvino’s husband in real life) at a friend’s gallery show, innocent flirting turns into punishing sex. Well, not too punishing. Although we get the thrusts and the groping, Lifetime movies, while allowing ample profanity, aren’t cool with doling out the nudity. Which, in a weird way…makes it kinda dirtier!
When Veronica experiences a dose of guilt, she tries to tell her secret lover that their stretch in stretching is done. And then the smitten dude becomes unhinged. Well, more unhinged than he already is. Turns out Backus has a long history with mental illness and when the new object of his affection kicks him to curb he loses his shit.
And so does the movie!
Up until this point, INDISCRETION is a junked up melodrama that recalls 80s rump-pump romps like BEDROOM EYES and RED SHOE DIARIES. But when the crazy comes to call, suddenly co-writer/director John Stewart Muller goes bananas right along with his villain, with operatic lapses in logic, histrionic fits at every turn, bloody violence, bizarre coincidences and eventually murder most foul.
Like many of the best Lifetime flicks, INDISCRETION is geared toward a primarily female audience, flipping roles usually essayed by men and adding a bit of social subtext. But here, I’m not sure what Muller is trying to say. Everything that befalls Veronica and her family are due to her titular transgression and yet she seemingly takes zero responsibility for what goes down (and who goes down). And the big twist at the end is a riotous thing, nonsensical and beyond cartoonish.
Luckily, Sorvino (who won an Oscar for Woody Allen’s MIGHTY APHRODITE and who is the daughter of THE STUFF, GOODFELLAS and CRUISING star Paul Sorvino) is a joy to watch, both in and out of the sweaty couplings she frequently indulges in. A true talent, she makes even the most phantasmagorical moments of the movie anchored in a kind of reality that the rest of the picture refuses to play in.
Ultimately, INDISCRETION is the kind of soaped-up, tawdry and violent crap we love. So might you.
Try to catch it on repeat on the Lifetime network before it skeezes its way to DVD.