Film review: The boy next door(15, 91 mins)

Steamier than 50 Shades but thriller loses the plot
The Boy Next Door: Jennifer Lopez as Claire PetersonThe Boy Next Door: Jennifer Lopez as Claire Peterson
The Boy Next Door: Jennifer Lopez as Claire Peterson

Never trust a good-looking stranger with your heart.

The Boy Next Door harks back to a bygone era of jeopardy thrillers when Michael Douglas’ unfaithful husband met his match in Glenn Close’s bunny boiler.

Alas, Rob Cohen’s hokey yarn is more Facile Distraction than Fatal Attraction, courtesy of a clumsy, cliche-riddled script. It doesn’t help that 27-year-old leading man Ryan Guzman, who flaunted his abs in the most recent Step Up films, has to pass as a high school senior.

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“I’m almost 20,” explains his character, inciting hoots of derision that become commonplace as the plot goes through predictable motions.

With a touch of tongue-in-cheek, The Boy Next Door might have achieved cult status like Basic Instinct.

Jennifer Lopez doesn’t convince as an educator of hormone-addled teenage minds.

Her lips are flawlessly glossed, her hair impeccably tousled, even when she is in the throes of a sex scene with Guzman and he is enthusiastically kneading her breasts as if they were balls of raw pizza dough.

If there’s one compliment you can pay The Boy Next Door, it’s that their on-screen coupling is far steamier than the slap and tickle in Fifty Shades.


Star rating: 5/10

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