In the new film "Chloe," actress Amanda Seyfried cements her reputation as the "it-actress" of the moment by delivering a mature, believable and erotic performance. In fact, the film is a very interesting and fascinating erotic thriller that unfortunately falls into some stereotypical Hollywood clichés near the final minutes of the movie. However the amazing performances from the actors and the strong first three quarters of the film make up for the failed ending. Don't get me wrong ... I really liked the film I was just disappointed by the conclusion. But that being said, Seyfried gives an exceptionally mature performance in a difficult role. Julianne Moore is equally good, as always giving the type of top-notch performance that actress has built her career on. Finally, rounding off the cast is the always-great Liam Neeson, who surprisingly Seyfried is able to hold her own with quite well.
In fact, Seyfried commands every scene she is in and it's almost impossible to not keep your eyes on her at all time. In the film the actress plays a high-priced prostitute and she is so adorable in the part. The way she is dressed and acts is sophisticated yet she looks so young that you are stricken by that dichotomy. The fact that this young girl can look so mature and sexy is at the same time both erotic and frightening. You can't help but feel sympathy for her while you are lusting after her. What really makes the film work is the strange obsession that Moore's character develops over Seyfried's Chloe. It isn't simply lust either, Moore's character is attracted to Chloe and it's almost that she wishes she could be her, youthful and beautiful. Yet there is the twist of the film, Moore's obsession comes back to haunt her when she realizes that Chloe is actually the one who is obsessed with her. Both actresses handle their parts well as they also do with their intimate scenes together. Moore is an old pro at this point handling these types of sexually explicit roles and its interesting seeing her here opposite Seyfried who commands the scenes with her own powerful onscreen sexuality.
The film begins by introducing us to Catherine and David (Moore and Neeson) a successful and seemingly perfectly happy Toronto couple. Catherine is a doctor and David is a College professor and they have one teenage son named Michael (Max Thieriot). Things start to fall a part in their marriage when Catherine throws a surprise birthday party for David and he doesn't come home after work. Catherine begins to fear that he is cheating on her with one of his students. Michael is rebelling against his Mother and Catherine is starting to feel isolated from her family. All alone in her life, she notices a high-priced prostitute one day who works out of a hotel lobby across the street from her office. Catherine eventually meets the Prostitute, Chloe (Seyfried) and they begin an awkward friendship.
Catherine hires Chloe to meet her husband and flirt with him so she can find out if he is cheating on her. Catherine discovers that David is willing to cheat when he begins an affair with Chloe but through the affair, Chloe and Catherine begin to be come close. With nowhere else to turn to Catherine confides in Chloe and the two eventually have an affair them selves. Embarrassed by what she has done Catherine calls the whole thing off but Chloe is not so happy about this. When the truth is revealed as to what Chloe's alternative motives really are Catherine is both shocked and left violated as a result. What follows will shock you as Chloe will stop at nothing to get what she wants, which in this case is Catherine and if she can't have her then she'll settle for her seemingly perfect life. This means no one in Catherine's life is safe including David, Michael or herself.
The film's theme of obsession is interesting and I like how the coin is eventually flipped as Catherine's obsession of Chloe is turned against her when Chloe is ultimately obsessed with her. What really works in the movie is the way director Atom Egoyan allows himself to take the time to let the obsession grow in the beginning and that works to great affect. The film is slow and really builds, which given the subject matter goes far to help create the mature and erotic feel of the film. The movie is based on a French film called "Nathalie" and it plays like a foreign film, which is quite refreshing and part of the film's charm. It's unfortunate that the film decides to delve into the cliché Hollywood ending that we would expect from a film like "The Orphan" or "Single White Female" but it still doesn't take away from the films strong performances and excellent first half. In the end, Chloe is a smart, mature and erotic thriller with great performances that despite falling into a few traps is still fulfilling adult entertainment.