Thriller crushed by its marketing campaign
Scott, a high school senior, is handsome, athletic and smart; he seems to have it all. And, since we haven’t seen a Fatal Attraction rip-off in a while, he also has a stalker. If that’s all you know about the movie Crush, it would be a fairly entertaining thriller the likes of which you’d find on The CW if it offered a movie of the week. But the more you know about it, the more pointless it becomes.
Warning: I am not going to reveal plot spoilers; however, by discussing Millennium Entertainment’s marketing campaign for the movie, its twists and turns will be ruined. If what little I’ve written so far intrigues you, stop reading and watch Crush. But if you’re curious about the nonsensical approach to selling the movie, please continue…
Crush thinks it provides a unique spin on the Fatal Attraction story by having the identity of the stalker be a mystery. However, up to the reveal, there’s no a mystery. What I mean is, you don’t know the girl you think is the stalker is a red herring because there’s nothing to indicate that she isn’t the stalker. When the true stalker is revealed, it is a twist, but it’s far less effective because you aren’t anticipating it (if that makes any sense).
If you think I’m interpreting something incorrectly, here’s an excerpt from Millennium’s synopsis: “Who’s responsible? Scott’s long time friend Jules, frustrated with their platonic relationship? Bess, a shy classmate, increasingly jealous of his friendship with Jules? Or Jeffrey, a bright outcast whose crush on Bess has led him to become increasingly obsessive?” It’s obvious the intent is for the identity of the stalker to be a mystery. But not once did I consider anyone but one person to be it.
On top of that, the cover of the DVD reveals the stalker’s identity! The advertising eradicates any reason to watch the movie. Granted, the synopsis is intriguing, but you’d have to read it to know the movie is a mystery. But, if you read it, you’re likely to see the picture and then the mystery is ruined.
Crush was written by Sonny Mallhi. If it’s any indication of the unoriginality of this movie, note that he also wrote 2011’s The Roommate, a take on the superior Single White Female (1992). He’d be better off to remain a producer where his track record is at least more interesting: The Lake House (2006), Shutter (2008) and The Strangers (2008), to name three more unique efforts.
All of that said, in and of itself, Crush is not unwatchable. Lucas Till is perfect as Scott. It’s easy to see why any girl (or boy) might lust after him. He played Havok in X-Men: First Class, so perhaps we’ll see more of him soon. Crystal Reed (MTVs Teen Wolf) is appropriately creepy, but has the role of the wallflower who looks like she could be prom queen. Believe me, if she got a decent haircut and wore something other than black, she’d be popular.
I’m not going to recommend that you either see or don’t see Crush. It is what it is. What it lacks in thrills and chills it compensates with eye candy. That’s enough for me to rate it above average, but just barely.