Successful LA marketing analyst Michael Boll (James Spader) seemingly has it all-except a sense of self-confidence. Enigmatic drifter Alex (Rob Lowe) enters Michael's life and immediately begins to exert a negative influence. As Michael's self-esteem zooms (aided by generous dollops of sex and drugs) he allows himself to be dragooned into a life of crime by the demonic Alex. The "doppelganger" aspects of Bad Influence, and the film's many unexpected twists and turns, echo films of Alfred Hitchcock, especially Strangers on a Train. The film's boldest stroke is to cast the likeable Lowe as the bad guy (albeit a charming one) and the often villainous Spader as the malleable milquetoast. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
An underrated thriller from the '90s with a Jekyll and Hyde theme. James Spader is excellent (as always) as a Mr. Perfect executive whose life is turned upside-down by Rob Lowe playing a cunning and evil liar. Lisa Zane is the sexy femme fatale who adds the spice to this dangerous brew.