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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Bad Influence
Bad Influence
MGM // R // December 3, 2002
List Price: $14.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Ron J. Epstein | posted November 26, 2002 | E-mail the Author
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C O N T E N T
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The Feature:
Michael Boll (James Spader) is a hapless market analyst who is unable to stand up to the abusive people in his life. His fiancée has a strict plan for their wedding date and when she wants to get pregnant, and he receives no respect from his co-workers. One day, he goes to a local bar, and is assaulted by a hot head. That's when he meets Alex (Rob Lowe). Alex breaks up the fight, and chases off the hot head. From that moment on, Michael develops an uneasy relationship with Alex, who serves as his mentor.

This movie shares so many similarities with Fight Club, one of my favorite movies of all-time. Without giving anything away, both movies follow a similar pattern. Main character works in an office, unsatisfied with life, until they meet a reckless stranger who opens their eyes, in both positive and negative ways.

Over the course of the movie, we see Michael become just as reckless as Alex. After a tape surfaces in an inopportune moment, Michael's engagement falls apart, and he turns to a life of crime… all with a wide smile on his face. That is, until he crosses Alex. From that point on, things devolve into a cat-and-mouse affair.

Video:
The DVD is presented in Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1 on one side, and for all three of you fullscreen fans, its presented in 1.33:1 on the other. The print is acceptable, but suffers from haziness that dulls out the film.

Audio:
The audio is presented in Dolby 2.0. A movie like this doesn't require DTS, but certain scenes would have benefited from the Dolby 5.1 treatment. A French audio track is provided on the DVD as well.

Menus:
Completely static, and boring images from the movie. Easy to navigate, but would it have killed them to make them the least bit interesting?

Extras:
MGM certainly is a Bad Influence on this DVD. Aside from one flimsy theatrical trailer, there is nothing else on this DVD except for the feature. Yawn.

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