A simple enough question, but how Jonathan McQuarry (EWAN McGREGOR) answers it will change his life forever. A corporate auditor adrift in a sea of New York's power elite, Jonathan's work is his entire life. But a chance meeting with Wyatt Bose (HUGH JACKMAN), a charismatic corporate lawyer, introduces Jonathan to a decadent playground for Manhattan's executive upper crust. For these power brokers, whose eighteen-hour workdays leave no time for a personal life, there's "The List" - a sex club, of sorts, where the right cell-phone number and four simple words ("Are you free tonight?") can lead to an evening's sexual fulfillment. It's a world of "intimacy without intricacy," as Jonathan's first conquest (or vice versa) explains to him, and through The List Jonathan discovers a side of himself that he didn't know existed. But an affair with a ravishing and mysterious stranger known to Jonathan only by her first initial 'S' (MICHELLE WILLIAMS), will expose him to yet another world he never imagined - one of betrayal, treachery and murder.
With its attractive cast and "stylish thriller" vibe, Deception
is a much better movie than a raft of negative reviews might suggest--provided that you can suspend (if not completely discard) your disbelief and go along for the ride. The first feature by veteran commercial director Marcel Langenegger, it stars Ewan McGregor as Jonathan McQuarry, a mousy freelance tax auditor whos taken under the wing of one Wyatt Bose (Hugh Jackman), a slick, ultra-confident Manhattan lawyer. We know from jump that Jonathans new best friend isnt all, or even any, that he seems, and sure enough, when the pair "accidentally" switch cell phones, a series of credibility-defying events destined to turn Jonathans bleak, lonely life upside down is set in motion. At first, its all good, as the wide-eyed young CPA finds himself joining "The List," a Wall Street sex club that brings together lawyers, stockbrokers, and other professionals whose lives are too busy for anything more than brief, anonymous assignations at various high-rent hotels (exchanging real names is verboten is this world). But apparently spending nights with the likes of Natasha Henstridge and Charlotte Rampling isnt enough; when he meets the blonde beauty known only as "S" (Michelle Williams), the clubs credo of "intimacy without intricacy" goes out the window, lust turns to love, and Jonathan is drawn into a protracted cat-and-mouse game that leads to murder, big-time corporate embezzlement, identity switches, and other nefarious activity. One neednt be Nostradamus to predict where all of this is headed, but thats hardly the point. Even if you dont buy a single moment of it, Deception
is fun, flashy, and entertaining--and since when is pure escapism a bad thing? --Sam Graham
Beyond Deception on DVD Stills from Deception (Click for larger image)