Tuesday, 12 September 2017
Bad Match (4 Stars)
This is the 23rd film in the Stuttgart Fantasy Film Festival.
One of the things I enjoy about the Fantasy Film festival is the opportunity to exchange thoughts about films with other serious film fans. There's a 10 to 15 minute gap between the films, and the first thing I do when a film ends is to rush outside and stand with other festival visitors. If I feel that they're having a private conversation I just stand close by and listen. If I feel that the discussion is open I join in.
Usually we more or less agree about the quality of the film that we've just watched. Sometimes one of the people points out a detail that I overlooked. Occasionally there are disagreements on how to interpret details of a film. But today is the first time that I stood alone with my opinion. I was the only one in the group who liked "Bad Match". The others looked at me like I was crazy when I said I enjoyed it, but I did my best to argue against them. Their main criticism was that the film was predictable. I agree. There was a supposed plot twist which I predicted 30 minutes before it happened. For me that was never a problem. A film doesn't have to be original to be a good film. "Bad Match" set out to tell a story, and it succeeded.
Think of the film as a 21st Century version of "Fatal Attraction". Harris is a successful marketing expert who doesn't want to settle down. He uses Tinder to pick up girls for one-night stands. Never the same girl twice. He never stays with the girl till breakfast. Then he picks up Riley. She's clingy, so he acts against his principles and sleeps with her a second night. After that she doesn't let him go. She moves into his apartment and won't leave. When he finally succeeds in throwing her out she won't stop ringing him. When he doesn't answer her calls she causes him problems that lead to him losing his job.
This is a powerful film about the dangers of online dating. That's what I say, even if nobody agrees with me.