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Michael Douglas, Glenn Close, Anne Archer, Fred Gwynne, Ellen Hamilton Latzen ... see more see more... , Mike Nussbaum , Stuart Pankin , Ellen Foley , Meg Mundy , Tom Brennan , Lois Smith , J.J. Johnston , Michael Arkin , Jane Krakowski , Justine Johnston , Mary Joy , James Eckhouse , Faith Geer , Carol Schneider , Anna Levine , Christopher Rubin , Gregg Scott , Jonathan Brandis , J.D. Hall , David McCharen , Larry Moss , Jan Rabson , Marilyn Schreffler , Vladimir Skomarovsky , Dennis Tufano , Sam Coppola , Judi M. Durand , Barbara Iley

"Fatal attraction" has become a household term for love turned to murderous obsession, thanks to the success of Adrian Lyne's 1987 movie. Dan (Michael Douglas) is a family man whose one-night affair w... read more read more...ith Alex (Glenn Close) turns into a nightmare when she insists on continuing the relationship, claiming to be carrying his baby. Alex systematically terrorizes Dan, even temporarily kidnapping his daughter, in her attempts to win back his affection. Douglas' besieged family man guiltily tries to preserve his marriage and family from the consequences of his own indiscretion. Close's performance as the love-struck psycho-siren remains her signature role: She conveys the buried feminist message of the film in her challenge to Dan to take responsibility for his sexual behavior. Though many critics acknowlegded the film's striking similarities to Clint Eastwood's 1971 film Play Misty for Me, Fatal Attraction spawned numerous other movies about middle-class families besieged by a lone psychotic intent on infiltrating and destroying the fabric of the family unit, including The Stepfather (1987), Pacific Heights (1990), The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992), and Fear (1996). ~ Laura Abraham, Rovi

Flixster Users

71% liked it

51,954 ratings


78% liked it

46 critics

DVD Release Date: April 16, 2002

Stats: 2,271 reviews

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Flixster Reviews (2,271)

  • November 27, 2012
    Looking at Fatal Attraction 25 years after its release it is clear to see the influence it has had. It had aged somewhat but not too badly in the scheme of things. It's a classic 80's thriller, it somehow gets away with so much thanks to the decade it was made in. It's now famous... read more death and bunny scenes are still good today, it obviously had an impact as the term 'bunny boiler' is a common household phrase. It was also nice to see the results of doing something bad, Michael Douglas's character is the bad guy and I agree with the message 'It's wrong to cheat', however I don't agree so much with the message 'Kill the mentally ill' but this is the 80's for you, the bad guy has always got to die.
  • September 27, 2012
    Fatal Attraction is a tense, taut and riveting drama thriller that has hints of the horror genre, but only suggests it. Instead, the film leaves you feel vulnerable at every turn, and make you think twice about having a one night stand if you're married. The acting is terrific, w... read moreith a standout performance by Glen Close as the film's villain. The plot is well constructed, and steadily unfolds to keep you hooked from start to finish. Adrian Lyne's directing is great and he keeps you on the edge of your seat. Glen Close is just insane as Alex Forrest and she definitely makes the film what it is. I thoroughly enjoyed this picture and I thought it had memorable and tense moments. As far as thrillers are concerned, Fatal Attraction remains one of the best films in the genre. Everything about this flick is well done, the plot is intense, the acting is solid and the direction is precise. The film does possess a few limitations, but there's more solid material that weak material on-screen. This is a well executed film that delivers effective thrills throughout and with a phenomenal performance by Glenn Close; it is a film that is not easy to forget. If you're looking for an effective thriller, then give this film a shot. This was an exciting, pulse pounding film that is elevated by great performances, and although it has a simple concept, the acting makes it worthwhile. Fatal Attraction is a film that will make you think twice about committing adultery.
  • March 25, 2012
    The only thing that ruins this personally is that I just couldn't buy Glenn Close as some hot woman. (Not that Michael Douglas is a catch himself quite honestly, but he had an attractive wife at home, and I couldn't see how he would be tempted by her). I nearly choked at the sugg... read moreestion that Glenn's character was 36. Hell that's rough looking for 36! Not being horrible, Glenn is a fantastic actress and she plays this role well, but physically all wrong for it. I would have bought someone like (80's) Ellen Barkin here.
    Once I got over that stretch of the imagination, this was a good movie, great acting from all the cast. Very well done and thought provoking. I have to admit, I found myself pitying both the women more than him (bought it all on himself as far as I am concerned). Glenn's character had some valid points about not going away and being ignored. She did lose me at the bunny boiling, though, cruelty to animals, not on. It did seem to me that all the rage got put onto her and "Michael" pretty much got away with it. (Not saying she wasn't tapped, but she clearly needed help, not a married man messing with her head for his own selfish disposal). I can't imagine why his wife took him back. Yes, they went through some traumatic experiences towards the end - car accident, disappearance of daughter, the bathroom scene - but it seems conveniently forgotten that all these events were caused by his infidelity. How could you trust him ever again?!
    Good movie, but have to question the mindset of all involved!
  • July 18, 2011
    A classic thriller that set the standards on the stalker, obsessed ex, woman scorned after revenge genre. Quite raunchy for the time it was made. The tension really mounts as Glenn Close's character goes to increasing desperate measures to keep in touch with and get her man. One ... read morescene produced a term of phrase that is still used wildly even today for an obsessed ex.
  • June 23, 2011
    Glenn Close plays an obsessed and very fragile woman extremely well. The ending was magnificent and I think the whole film was well played out and the plot was well thought about. A must see!
  • January 29, 2011
    The most intense thriller of the decade, an 80s classic! This is a romantic nightmare film, which is really quite unique, and the actors are brilliant. I loved this movie, and I highly recommend it.
  • August 9, 2010
    Just what you expect it to be: a "this is what happens when you mess up," thriller combined with dramatization and bloody revenge. Douglas is great as always in his best movie making decade, and Close is just as brilliant as her other roles.
  • March 13, 2010
    This was a really good movie. Great thriller film Glen Close's and Michael Douglas' performances were really good. :) Can watch this movie over and over. :) This is such a good thriller! :) I love this movie!!! :)
  • December 8, 2009
    While it's not exactly a great movie, seeing Glenn Close completely lose her mind is quite interesting to watch. In addition to that, there is the priceless bunny stew and a truly frightened Michael Douglas. It should be a warning for adultery, you can always end up with a crazy ... read moreone.
  • August 10, 2009
    ?and the term ?bunny boiler? was born!

    A film that everyone knows the storyline, even if they haven?t seen it.

    A good role for Glen Close, as you really do not offer any sympathy to her all the way through, she becomes the ultimate stalker and quite a hatred builds toward h... read moreer character throughout the film. Certainly an 80?s film worth seeing, but is rather dated now.

Critic Reviews

Jay Boyar
June 12, 2013
Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel

Under the direction of Adrian Lyne, most of the picture's situations seem like randomly chosen place holders, flat events that just fill time until the final bizarre confrontation. Full Review

Richard Corliss
February 11, 2008
Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine

[The film brings] horror home to a place where the grownup moviegoer actually lives. Full Review

Variety Staff
February 11, 2008
Variety Staff, Variety

The screws are tightened expertly in this suspenseful meller about a flipped-out femme who makes life hell for the married man who scorns her. Full Review

Jonathan Rosenbaum
February 11, 2008
Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader

While billed as a romance and a thriller, the film strictly qualifies as neither, appealing to our prurience, guilt, hatred, and dread. Full Review

January 26, 2006
Time Out

A predictable dog's dinner of Pavlovian thriller clichés, this will appeal strongly to those who think women should be kept on a short lead. Full Review

Janet Maslin
May 20, 2003
Janet Maslin, New York Times

Years hence, it will be possible to pinpoint the exact moment that produced Fatal Attraction, Adrian Lyne's new romantic thriller, and the precise circumstances that made it a hit. Full Review

Desson Thomson
January 1, 2000
Desson Thomson, Washington Post

Close should take pride in her performance. She should also expect a depressing avalanche of scripts requiring a she-wacko. Full Review

Hal Hinson
January 1, 2000
Hal Hinson, Washington Post

Fatal Attraction has an inescapable pull to it; it's suffocatingly exciting. Full Review

Roger Ebert
January 1, 2000
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Because the good things in the movie -- including the performances -- are so very good, it's a shame that the film's potential for greatness was so blatantly compromised. Full Review

Austin Kennedy
April 30, 2013
Austin Kennedy, Film Geek Central

Solid direction, ,thrilling set pieces, and an iconic performance from Glenn Close. It's a sleazy movie, but an extremely watchable one. The entertainment value for this one is very high. Full Review

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    • Alex Forrest: I won't be ignored, Dan!

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Fatal Attraction Trivia

  • "Fatal Attraction" (1987) was one of the most talked about movies of the 80s. Who played the sinister stalker, Alex Forrest?   Answer »
  • In "Fatal Attraction," Beth actually threatens to kill Alex?  Answer »
  • In "Fatal Attraction," what is Dan's occupation?  Answer »
  • In "Fatal Attraction," when Alex kidnaps the Gallagher's daughter, where does she take her?  Answer »

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