By Tom Meek | February 9, 1998

What begins as a lush, pulpy gothic laced with intrigue quickly spins into a convoluted web of over engineered and preposterous plot twists. Woody Harrelson plays the film’s ironic hero: a man framed and sent to prison, who once cleared, immediately jumps into a risque kidnapping scheme. He’s lured into the swindle by a sultry Elisabeth Shue and her tightly hemmed skirts. In order to extort a half million from her rich husband all they have to do is fake the abduction of her free spirited stepdaughter (a sassy Chloe Sevigny). The script based on James Hadley Chase’s “Just Another Sucker,” makes a few slight, unsatisfactory efforts to explain why Harrleson’s character would aimlessly squander his second chance at life. The actor struggles valiantly with the stiff material, but this is simply a sexy, smug exercise that doesn’t concern itself with character development or credibility.

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