Year Released: 2002
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 85 minutes
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The unusual title of the teenybopper thriller “Swimfan” comes from the online handle (“SwimFan85″) of new girl in town Madison (Erika Christensen), who on one night brings out the bad side in reformed teen delinquent, now high school swimming stud Ben (Jesse Bradford). Ben quickly regrets their fuck in the pool and even more his foolish decision to tell her that he loves her, for Madison reveals herself to be a certifiable nutcase, and soon not only is he in danger, but those around him, including his cluelessly loyal girlfriend Amy (Shiri Appleby).
Director John Polson was obviously aiming to make a “Fatal Attraction” for the younger set, right down to the waterlogged finale, but this movie doesn’t even reach the campy, trashy highs (or should I say “lows”?) of “The Crush.” Bradford spends the entire film with an Andrew Shue-ish sullen, slack-jawed expression, but even that’s more than what the bland Appleby brings to her doormat role. Christensen, who was quite impressive in Traffic as the drug-addicted daughter of Michael Douglas (who, in what is perhaps a nod to both that film and “Fatal,” is thanked in the credits), seems adrift in the role of the bitch, never coming off as either convincingly evil or amusingly over-the-top. What is amusingly over-the-top, however, is how Polson uses a Wolverine-esque “SNIKT” sound effect to convey whenever something sets Madison off. And that, right there, is the only dementedly inspired thing in the entire 85-minute running time.
Posted on September 12, 2002 in Reviews by Michael Dequina
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