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Swimfan (2002)

Obsession. Betrayal. Revenge. Some girls have all the fun.

Directed by:

John Polson

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 81 minutes

UK Certificate: 12

On DVD

Jesse Bradford plays Ben Cronin, a high school boy who has it all – good friends, a girl he loves, and the promise of a top swimming career and an athletic scholarship. Ben is succeeding even though it is hard work, as he juggles his social life with training at the pool and his job at a local hospital. Stanford scouts are coming to see him at the next swimming meet, and his biggest problem is that girlfriend Amy (Shiri Appleby) will be studying some distance from Stanford.

Ben's stable and perfect life is turned to chaos when he meets new-girl-in-school Madison Bell (Erika Christensen), a stunning and mysterious blonde. She soon makes clear her interest in Ben, and eventually seduces him in the pool. Ben immediately regrets his actions and wants nothing more to do with Madison. However, the obsessive Madison is not about to let go that easily. Invading his home and his life, his biggest fan sets out to destroy everything he holds dear until he admits his love for her.

The problem with this movie is that the story has been told before, with much more style and bigger thrills. A kind of Fatal Attraction for the teen generation, it never seems to be quite sure whether it's trying to be a teen movie or a stylish thriller and thus manages to stop just short of achieving either. Of the cast, only Erika Christensen as the creepy Madison occasionally manages to inject some real passion into the script, but even she sometimes just looks bored. Jesse just seems to let things happen to him, while Amy doesn't seem to be allowed to show any personality at all. The film looks good much of the time, but even that has been done better by others in this genre.

It's Got: A stylish look.

It Needs: More coherence and some new ideas.

DVD Extras The deleted scenes in particular offer further insight into the characters. Extras: Commentary by actors Jesse Bradford & Erika Christensen and director John Polson, Deleted and extended scenes with optional commentary, The Girlfriend from Hell featurette, Theatrical trailer, TV & radio spots. DVD Extras Rating: 7/10

Alternatives:

Basic Instinct, Fatal Attraction, Fear, The Crush

Summary

While this is not bad as a teen thriller, sadly this story has been told on film a number of times before and often with better results.