Monday, March 1, 2010

The Crush (1993)

Reviewed By: Billy

This is it, folks; this is the real deal. The Crush is a movie that’s not just so bad it’s good…it’s a movie that’s so terrible it’s nearly perfect. An insanely stupid melding of Lolita with Fatal Attraction, and boasting not one but THREE equally preposterous lead performances, The Crush is the kind of movie JM and I can watch over and over again – and frequently do – and always come up with some new hilarious tidbit to quote for days. For example, as I write this, I just noticed this credit for the first time, which is awesome:

Let’s start – as the movie does – with leading man Cary Elwes as new-guy-in-town Nick Eliot. Boasting the most perfectly coiffed 90s bang swoop this side of Edward Furlong, Cary does his best to hide a pronounced English accent (his best, by the way, being completely unsuccessful) as his character starts a new job as a writer at a big-city “trendy” magazine. Nick has big dreams of being a great reporter – a dream that seems all too out-of-reach when he makes impossibly stupid mistake of renting a sh*t hole of a guesthouse without even stepping foot inside.

Lucky for him, his new neighbor is teen sexpot Adrian, played by Alicia Silverstone in what the DVD box calls her “breakthrough role.” Apparently, overacting with a forced, unnatural sexuality is all it takes to “break through” – which means Sharon Stone has been having breakthroughs for about 20 years now. Anyway, Adrian is a spoiled rich teen who develops a bizarre crush on Nick, something that becomes painfully obvious as she spies in him in the bathroom. And ladies and gentleman, may we present to you ridiculous butt double #1:

Nick does his best to discourage the 14-year-old’s advances, although his attempts – which include telling her “If you were ten years older...” and later kissing her on a moonlit boat harbor – probably aren’t the best way to make the kid disappear. The kiss, by the way, is totally awkward and disturbing, especially when followed by this scene minutes later, during which the camera lovingly pans over the pre-teen in her bathing suit as Nick watches her through a window:

Anyway, soon Adrian is exhibiting some…er…violent tendencies as it becomes apparent that Nick is into another woman, Amy. Amy, by the way, is played by Jennifer Rubin. Yes, the punk girl from A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. Jennifer is anything but punk here, instead reduced to playing a slightly tomboyish photographer who – perhaps in an attempt to balance out Alicia – displays not an ounce of sexuality at all. Adrian and Amy don’t exactly hit if off, a scene played out as poor Amy is told she has “small breasts” by the 14-year-old. Ouch.

Nick, meanwhile, continues his chain of colossal mistakes by breaking into Adrian’s home and “inadvertently” spying on her in the bathroom. And ladies and gentlemen, may we present to you ridiculous butt double #2:

So, Adrian finally gets really pissed off and starts trying to kill people, which is where things really pick up. First she gives her little friend a faulty saddle so that the girl gets thrown by a horse, and then she takes a page from the Sleepaway Camp book of murder by locking Amy up with a hive of wasps. This may seem to you like a strangely difficult way of trying to kill someone, but it does give us, the viewers, the pleasure of watching Jennifer Rubin freak out around the room while covered in bugs:

This is nothing compared to the final showdown, though, which pits our adult male protagonist against a 14-year-old in hand-to-hand combat. Yes, that’s right, there’s an actual fight scene between the two. Well, it’s a fight scene between Cary Elwes and someone in a long wig. One more time, ladies and gentlemen, may we present to you another ridiculous body double:

So, the movie ends with poor Adrian locked away in a mental hospital, and Nick living with Amy happily ever after. And I guess we’re supposed to forget that Nick actually kissed the 14-year-old girl at one point. I mean, sure…trying to kill someone with wasps would indicate that she's crazy. But…didn’t Nick kind of ask for it by making out with the kid?

Oh, well…what’s important is that The Crush is awesome. Alicia Silverstone’s performance here easily earns her a spot in the Tower Farm Trashy Women Hall of Fame, if only for the nauseating moment when she asks Nick, “Ever do a virgin?” And Cary Elwes may just lead the pack in the brand-new Tower Farm Bland Beyond Words Leading Men Hall of Fame, along with David Morrissey in Basic Instinct 2 and David Boreanaz of Valentine. Oh, and the body doubles are great, too. They don’t get any awards, but they do get…



  1. Great review! I love Cary Elwes--I can't hate him after THE PRINCESS BRIDE, no matter what crap he stars in from now on--but man, does he suck at non-English accents. While I liked the first SAW movie, I thought his accent was one of the worst things in it. And totally unnecessary in that case--couldn't the director have just said, "Okay, Cary, your character LIVES in the US, but was BORN in England. So you know, just talk normally. Please. For God's sake."

  2. Oh, man...when this film first hit theaters I was probably 14 or 15, and I was ALL about the delicious Ms. Silverstone. I talked my father into watching it on cable with me one day: he asked, "Well, is it any good?" to which I replied, "It's got a hot chick smashing things with a bat. Of course it's good!" (Does she actually smash anything with a bat? My memory is a little fuzzy on that one.) I was simply CRUSHED when I found out that the bare ass on display was actually a talented body double. Boo, hiss, etc.

    Great review, as always, fellas.

  3. Vicar,
    I totally agree -- why not just make the damn characters British? There are plenty of people with accents living in America. And it would be SO much less distracting that way! Oh, least we get to have fun listening to people like Cary struggle with their pronunciations!

    Jonny Metro,
    Oh, yeah, she totally smashes things up with a big wooden stick, so same thing. I love Alicia's various body doubles because the body types look absolutely NOTHING like hers. It's also worth noting that apparently her character's name was changed from "Darian" to "Adrian" after the film was finished -- and you can actually see everyone's lips still saying "Darian" although they've been dubbed!


  4. Ive basically been married to Alicia Silverstone since the Cryin music video. God. Damned. I always turn this DVD backwards on my wall so no one will make fun of me for it, but it is actually an awesome little psycho stalker flick, and surprisingly I really enjoyed Fear too! Great review guys

  5. Oooh, I especially love The Crush. But do I love it as much as The Temp? Pretty close I must say.

    Great review!

  6. Cinema Du Meep is right... THE TEMP... That is a close call.


  7. Oh my god. I haven't seen this movie since, well, 1993. I must see it again and revel in its terribleness. And then I'll watch Clueless.