by Rima Thompson
Want to know how to waste money? Go see “Swimfan,” which opened on Sept. 6.
Directed by John Polson whose credits include “Mission Impossible 2,” “The Boys,” and “The Sum of Us,” “Swimfan” stars Jesse Bradford (“Romeo & Juliet”) and Erika Christensen (“Traffic”).
Bradford plays a former troubled teen turned all-star swimmer Ben Cronin, who finds himself in a heap of trouble when Madison Bell (Christensen), enters the story.
New to the school, Madison already has her eyes set on Ben, who unknowingly befriends her when she has trouble opening her school locker
The movie opens with — surprise surprise — Ben and his girlfriend Amy Miller (Sheri Appleby) making out in his car on the side of a road. We all know a teen movie wouldn’t be a teen movie without some type of sexual interaction between two characters to get the movie started, even if the scene has no real point to it.
After a few chance meetings, Ben and Madison go for a swim, a swim that ultimately changes Ben’s life for the worse.
Madison spends the rest of the movie stalking Ben by doing predictable things like showing up at his house, leaving her underwear in his car, and sending him naked pictures of herself (a reason in itself for every 16 year old boy to go see this movie). You would think that Ben would never dream of ticking Madison off, but he does and faces serious consequences for it.
Madison goes from a new girl coming on a little too strong to a psychopath planning a conspiracy to make Ben’s life a nightmare. He spends the rest of the movie trying to put it back together.
All in all, the movie gets a five out of 10. Much credit does go to the cinematographer, as it was the only good thing about the movie. From the camera angles and the double-take effects on the characters during important scenes in the movie, the cinematography was effective and brilliant.
Another round of applause goes to the actor that played Dante, who took a few lines and made them believable, while other characters seemed to babble on about nothing.
The main problem with the actors, aside from Dante, were that they were not doing much acting.
Each scene was far too short and the viewer hardly had enough time to grasp what happened before the scene switched.
Between scenes filled with short fits of dialogue and awkward silences, the viewer was left asking, “What just happened?”
An overused plot may make viewers feel like they’ve seen this movie before. “Swimfan” lacked originality.
“Swimfan” could have helped the teen movie genre by doing an old thing with a new twist but instead went with the typical teen formula and sinks to the bottom.