Killing Me Softly
Time Out saysA debased update of those films noirs in which an unsuspecting girl starts to wonder if she's carelessly married a murderous sadist. Alice (Graham, miscast as a raving beauty) enjoys a vigorous fuck with Adam Tallis (Fiennes) just minutes after making eye-contact at the traffic lights; she's an American in London, he's a mountaineer who lives at permanently high altitude, even in Islington. When they marry, Adam's honeymoon treat is an uphill hike followed by sex enhanced with strangulation games in a country cottage. Bliss for the literally breathless Alice - until the anonymous notes start arriving, warning her that she's married a heel. Inane and shopworn material with a truly cheesy final twist, this is made excruciating by direction that takes it all deadly seriously. The fact that Chen chose this for his first non-Chinese film suggests that (a) he really wanted to direct a sex scene or two, and (b) he can't tell a Mandarin duck from a turkey. (From the novel by Nicci French.