Released: Apr 01st, 1993
Running Time: 90
Director: Gregory Hippolyte
Company: Academy Entertainment
Cast: Nick Cassavetes, Richard Roundtree, Anna Karin, Diana Barton, Sandahl Bergman, Shannon Whirry, Catherine Parks
Critical Rating: Not Yet Rated
Thanks to films like Final Analysis with Richard Gere, the handsome but vulnerable psychiatrist has become the new America folk hero. And, like Final Analysis, Body of Influence is tempestuous, smoldering, neurotic and thanks to the straight-to-video and cable markets, much sexier with a lot more skin in the clinches.
Handsome Nick Casavetes plays a Beverly Hills shrink named Jonathan Brooks. He caters to an exclusive clientele of frustrated housewives who have more collective sex on the brain than a group of summer camp counselors. Even when these neo-femme fatales come on to him by stripping (or partially) —look for Tiffany Million in a cameo), Cassavetes remains unblinking and removed from emotional attachment. Or so we think.
Enter Laura (Shannon Whirry), a woman who's got trouble written all over her. If you remember Whirry from Animal Instincts (Academy Entertainment), you know Whirry can play a wacko with the best of them. This is a woman who looks lost in some cloud, and thems the most dangerous. Through a series of the famous "I had that dream again last night" sessions in which Brooks probes her about her sexual obsessions, Whirry gradually draws Brooks into her web. Consequently, he loses all sense of perspective. His fiancee walks out on him and Brooks' practice goes to hell when he gets involved with a patient, Sandahl Bergman, who brings him up on sexual misconduct charges.
Shaft veteran Richard Roundtree is along for the ride as part of the gripping subplot which has him and Cassavetes on the trail of a series killer who's knocked off a number of hookers. Don Swayze lends a cameo as a guest psycho.
Though Body of Influence shows far less of Whirry, than we saw in Animal Instincts (she was naked in nearly every other scene), it has enough suspense and sublayers of pathology to sustain your interest. A taut, well-crafter erotic thriller.