Naomi MacKay gets caught up in a psychological thriller at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre.
Believe it or not, it’s 35 years since the film Fatal Attraction, starring Glenn Close and Michael Douglas, first hit the big screens.
A cautionary tale for would-be adulterous men everywhere, the movie had everyone talking – and was the origin of the phrase ‘bunny boiler’.
Now it’s back on the stage at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. Brought out of the 80s and into the modern-day, through the use of mobile phone conversations and Covid-friendly fist bumps.
Glenn Close has been replaced by Susie Amy – who became a household name as Chardonnay in TV’s Footballers’ Wives. Susie plays Alex Forrest, an editor who meets lawyer Dan Gallagher (played by Oliver Farnsworth) in a New York bar, and ends up in bed with him.
In an earlier version of the touring play, Susie played Dan’s wife Beth, a role now filled by former Eternal star Louise Redknapp.
The set design is clever – with towering screens forming backdrops and suggesting scenes that can’t be shown on stage – a car crash, sulphuric acid melting paintwork. All the while an ominous beat sounds in the background, heightening the level of suspense.
It’s a gripping story, and although the on-stage chemistry between Oliver and Susie is not as hot as you might expect for such a tale, they both did a great job of depicting their individual anguish – as Alex spirals into madness, and Dan wallows in desperation as a man who is about to lose everything he loves.
The action really starts to heat up as the spurned Alex continues to pursue her former lover, and exacts revenge for the way she believes he has treated her. The Aylesbury audience were really caught up in the story – as evidenced by the gasps as Alex appears at the married couple’s flat posing as a would-buyer – and poor innocent wife Beth hands over their phone number and all her contact details…
There’s a few more twists and turns to keep you on your toes – and of course the famous bunny boiling scene.
As so often happens, the play stays true to the original ending rather than the one in the film – so even if you have seen the movie there’ll still be a few surprises for you.