The Crush

January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Nick Elliot (Cary Elwes) needs somewhere to live, but his journalism career demands a place that offers peace and quiet, somewhere he can work without disruptions every five minutes. After some looking around it seems like he has found the perfect place in the form of the guest house behind the home of Cliff & Liv Forrester (Kurtwood Smith & Gwynyth Walsh). His new home is quite nice and after some cleaning and straightening he manages to turn the place into a home he can relax and work in. He soon becomes familiar with the daughter of the family, Adrian (Alicia Silverstone) who appears to be a beautiful but spoiled fourteen year old girl. Adrian takes a liking to Nick and the two strike up a sort of friendship, as Nick tells her some personal information and Adrian does the same. Nick thinks this is all innocent of course, but he soon realizes this is much more than that as Adrian tries to become more than friends. When he tries to push her away she becomes very upset and when Nick brings home a female friend, it sends Adrian into a jealous rage. Adrian is used to getting what she wants, so how far will she go to make sure Nick becomes hers?

While the storyline seems like a darker episode from The Baby-Sitters Club, this movie is actually very dark at times and stands as a superb overall thriller. I’m sure many will rent this hoping to see some skin on a very young Alicia Silverstone, but those folks will be sent home displeased as very little nudity occurs and when it does, its a body double. So while horndogs in need of flesh will be unhappy, fans of well executed thrillers should be quite pleased with this one. As with all suspense/thrillers you’ll need to suspend disbelief at times, but with such a realistic storyline not as much as you might think. Alicia Silverstone is brilliant (yes, I just said that) in her debut role and makes this movie work all by herself. She has a nice supporting cast around here, but there isn’t a scene in this movie she doesn’t own. The writing is very good on the level and the directing is also solid. While some might balk at a thriller with a fourteen year old girl as the villain, but after seeing this movie they might chance their minds. I recommend this as a rental to first time viewers, but fans will want to scoop this one up right away for their personal collections.

This film was written and directed by Alan Shapiro, who comes through well on both fronts with this movie. While he doesn’t have many films to his credit, Shapiro shows no traces of inexperience in this film, rather he shows a flair which makes him seem like a wily veteran. Along with director of photography Bruce Surtees, Shapiro creates a dynamic visual atmosphere for this movie and one that fits the characters and events to perfection. Surtees uses angles and placements very well in this film, especially when Silverstone is present and this adds so much depth and polish to the movie. The visuals are very good, but they never distract you from the story at any time and if they do, it is intentional. If you want to see more of Shapiro’s films you only have one feature film to choose from, Flipper which is worth a look if you like family comedies. This movie features the debut performance of Alicia Silverstone (Clueless, Blast From The Past), who commands this film from start to finish and sent herself into the realm of stardom. Silverstone owns all the scenes she is in and basically owns this entire motion picture, to be honest. The supporting cast includes Cary Elwes (Kiss The Girls, The Princess Bride), Jennifer Rubin (A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors), Amber Benson (Can’t Hardly Wait, S.F.W.), Kurtwood Smith (To Die For, Deep Impact), and Gwynyth Walsh (The Portrait).

Video: How does it look?

The Crush is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. I am very pleased with this visual presentation and I think other fans of this film will agree. I found no problems at all with the source print and compression errors were at a bare minimum. Colors seem vivid and bright, with no smears or similar color errors and flesh tones look natural and undistorted. I couldn’t find trouble with the contrast either, shadows are layered well and no visible detail loss is evident. This is the best film has looked to date on home video and I for one am glad it got such a nice treatment.

Audio: How does it sound?

This release includes a newly minted Dolby Digital 5.1 track which offers a nice experience, but has some problems as well. The music sounds loud in this mix, which wouldn’t be a problem in most cases but it sometimes overshadows the dialogue here. This is also true of the sound effects, so you often have to adjust the volume back and forth to find a medium. While this is a problem it doesn’t happen too often, so I won’t be too critical. When the dialogue is at the proper volume it sounds crisp and clean, so don’t let my worries scare you away from this disc.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This release contains some meager talent files and some theatrical trailers, but no trailer for this movie is present.

Disc Scores