Metro In Focus: “Getting played” in Hollywood movies dates back decades
By Richard Crouse – Metro Canada In Focus
In the new movie The Other Woman Mark King (Game of Thrones’s Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) tries to push infidelity to Tiger Woodsian heights by cheating on his wife (Leslie Mann) with multiple mistresses, including Carly and Amber (Cameron Diaz and Kate Upton). “We got played by the same guy,” says Carly.
“Getting played” in Hollywood movies dates back further than the invention of the ashleymadison website.
In 1960 the Jack Lemmon movie The Apartment tackled the subject of adultery. The film, about a lonely insurance company lackey who allows his bosses to use his apartment as a trysting spot in hopes that they will promote him, was a big hit, but also a controversial one. The Saturday Review called it “a dirty fairy tale” and co-star Fred McMurray says a woman on the street hit him with her purse, taking to him to task for making “a dirty, filthy movie.”
2005’s Derailed, stars Clive Owen as a married man who hooks up with Lucinda (Jennifer Aniston) after meeting her on a commuter train. In a hormone induced rush they decide to consummate their illicit affair at a seedy hotel, only to be interrupted by a burglar who robs them and sexually assaults Lucinda. Things spiral out of control as the robber blackmails the couple and seems to have an unquenchable thirst for Owen’s money.
Derailed is a cautionary tale about staying faithful to your spouse and never, ever renting rooms in sleazy hotels. Part Fatal Attraction, part Hitchcock thriller the movie stays on track through the set-up of the story, but as soon as the going gets rough the story, well… derails.
The most famous infidelity movie has to be 1987’s Fatal Attraction. It begins with Michael “I’m a married man!” Douglas having a fling with Glenn “I’m not gonna be ignored!” Close. When he tries to break off their affair, she becomes a lesson in why not to cheat on your wife.
The film was a sensation on release, inspiring a number of imitators including The Crush, Single White Female and a spoof called Fatal Instinct, and its most famous clip, the rabbit boiling on the stove, even inspired a phrase in the Urban Dictionary. According to the website, cook your rabbit “refers to the moment when someone goes over the edge in their obsession with another person.”
In an interview twenty year after the film’s release Close said, “”Men still come up to me and say, ‘You scared the [crap] out of me.’ Sometimes they say, ‘You saved my marriage.'”