The Last Seduction offers myriad pleasures: noir at its blackest, the final word in femme fatales, dialogue so snappy it could have been written by a rabid Rottweiler and twists enough to satisfy Chubby Checker.

But more, much more than this, The Last Seduction once again gives us the spectacle of Bill Pullman, cinema's number one male victim, suffering at the hands of a duplicitous woman.

I don't know why the sight of Pullman being jerked around thrills me so - it could be his creeping Jesus manner - but I'm obviously not alone in getting off on his pain (balls nailed to a chair in The Serpent and the Rainbow) bewilderment (discovers wife Kristie Alley screwed his brother to death in Sibling Rivalry) and dawning realisation: Anita Morris uses him a sex toy in Ruthless People and Jodie Foster and Meg Ryan both dump him for something better in Sommersby and Sleepless in Seattle.

There's always a moment in Pullman pictures where he figures out he's been taken for ride, that he's a stand-in, a fool, a fall guy, the modern Ralph Bellamy. Here's a favourite: in Malice the police, who suspect he's a serial killer, tell him that he couldn't have possibly been responsible for Nicole Kidman's pregnancy because his sperm count is non-existent. Have a nice day] Unfortunately, the script blows it by letting him triumph over his superbitch spouse, which explains why the movie didn't gross as big as predicted.

The Last Seduction rectifies that fault and then some. Which is more than playing to the gallery. When Bill Pullman suffers it's not just to please us vindictive types; it's an object demonstration of the natural order of the universe.

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