6.9/10
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247 user 104 critic

Fatal Attraction (1987)

Trailer
1:34 | Trailer
A married man's one-night stand comes back to haunt him when that lover begins to stalk him and his family.

Director:

Adrian Lyne

Writers:

James Dearden (screenplay), James Dearden (short film)
Reviews
Popularity
1,334 ( 336)
Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Douglas ... Dan Gallagher
Glenn Close ... Alex Forrest
Anne Archer ... Beth Gallagher
Ellen Latzen ... Ellen Gallagher (as Ellen Hamilton Latzen)
Stuart Pankin ... Jimmy
Ellen Foley ... Hildy
Fred Gwynne ... Arthur
Meg Mundy ... Joan Rogerson
Tom Brennan Tom Brennan ... Howard Rogerson
Lois Smith ... Martha
Mike Nussbaum ... Bob Drimmer
J.J. Johnston ... O'Rourke
Michael Arkin Michael Arkin ... Lieutenant
Sam Coppola ... Fuselli (as Sam J. Coppola)
Eunice Prewitt Eunice Prewitt ... Receptionist
Learn more

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Storyline

Happily married New York lawyer Dan Gallagher has an affair with his colleague Alex, and the two enjoy a love weekend while Dan's wife and kid are away. But Alex will not let go of him, and she will stop at nothing to have him for herself. Just how far will she go to get what she wants? Written by Sami Al-Taher <staher2000@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A look that led to an evening. A mistake he'll regret...FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Femme Fatale: Alex is an interesting spin on this, in that her arc isn't about "using" Dan so much as punishing him for "ignoring" her. See more »

Goofs

Alex rips Dan's shirt open. We hear buttons pop and cloth rip. When he buttons it the second time, the shirt is not ripped anywhere and all the buttons are present. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Beth Gallagher: [to Dan] You better get going kiddo, we're gonna be late.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Barbara Harris is sometimes credited under the name Barbara Iley. In the final credits here, under 'Party Guests,' she is credited under both names. See more »

Alternate Versions

AMC version uses alternate takes of the bedroom scene with Alex covered with a sheet over her chest before she kicks out Dan in order to avoid editing out nudity. These takes were originally rejected by Adrian Lyne because he did not think the performances were up to par. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Death in Paradise: Death of a Detective (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

ITSUKI NO KOMORI-UTA
Arranged by Hideaki Shibata
Courtesy of King Record Co., Ltd.
See more »

User Reviews

 
"It scared the living daylights out of every man in America!"...
21 May 2017 | by AlsExGalSee all my reviews

... so says Tom Hanks in 1993's "Sleepless in Seattle" to his son in reference to this movie and comparing its outcome to a strange woman who has been writing the widower (Hanks) as a result of him appearing on a radio show. But that's another movie.

The point is, its lesson was still easily recognizable in popular culture six years after it was made. What looks like an easy lay with a beautiful single woman can easily turn into an object lesson on Murphy's law. Dan Gallagher (Michael Douglas) is a successful NYC attorney, and on a weekend when his wife and daughter are away from home at his in-laws' house, he has a work meeting that includes Alex Forrest (Glenn Close), an editor for a publishing company. This leads to a drink at a bar, and that leads to a passionate one night stand that turns into a two night stand when Alex attempts suicide when Dan tries to leave.

Dan thinks it's over. Alex has seemed to come to her senses. But then she tells him she is pregnant, and no she is having this baby because she is 36 and it may be her last chance. When Dan insists he is not leaving his wife for her, that he does not love her - well, let's just say that the opposite of love is not hate it's indifference, and Alex at first stalks Dan and gradually turns up the heat until his entire family is at risk. The suspense builds until the harrowing end.

The thing is, Dan always loved his wife, subtly played by Ann Archer. She is beautiful, supportive, and he still has passion for her. They have a little girl and are a very happy family. But he just could not say no to what looked like a one night adventure that nobody need ever know about that turns into a nightmare.

There is more to the film than the cautionary "Don't cheat on your wife" message. I think it's because Glenn Close does such a fantastic job playing Alex. There's something about her portrayal that, to me, paints Alex as ultimately powerful, not just outright insane. Until the end she mostly dominates what happens to Michael Douglas' character's life. I think this one has aged well and would still recommend it.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 September 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Affairs of the Heart See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,602,740, 20 September 1987

Gross USA:

$156,645,693

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$320,145,693
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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