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Laramie Movie Scope: Malice

Betrayal piled on top of betrayal

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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November 1, 1993 -- ``Malice'' appears to be another of those clunky psychological thrillers like ``Sleeping With the Enemy,'' but early into the film you find out the story is headed in a completely different direction.

``Malice'' is a story about scams. It piles betrayal, upon betrayal, upon betrayal to create a truly eerie atmosphere. In addition to the scam plot, there's another subpolt involving a serial rapist. The rapist subplot is unnecessary, and detracts from the main story. The plot is complicated enough without a red herring. There are numerous plot twists and a clever ending.

Bill Pullman plays a mild-mannered college professor, whose pregnant wife (Nicole Kidman) is operated on by an old high school friend (Alec Baldwin). The baby is lost, along with his wife's ovaries, during the operation and Baldwin is sued by the wife, who also leaves her husband.

The husband finds out he has been duped and decides to get even. Pullman is very good as the worm who turns. Baldwin is properly oily and Kidman is deliciously nasty. The plot is twisty enough to keep you guessing through most of the film, but not all of it.

This film rates a B.

Click here for links to places to buy this movie in video and/or DVD format, the soundtrack, books, even used videos, games and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)