The Corporate Ladder (1997)
R · 1h 52min · Action, Thriller · 10 May 1997
THE CORPORATE LADDER is a Playboy Channel movie, filled with pseudo-erotica and some beautiful women. John Anthony Denison (Crime Story) plays Matt, an up and coming advertising executive, on the brink of a major ad promotion contract with a jeans company. In steps his new assistant, Kathleen Kinmont, whose take charge attitude and imagination, win the deal for him. Of course, Kinmont has more than her career in mind: she wants Mark. Mark, of course, is married to lovely Talisa Soto, who is also pregnant. But lust wins over and Matt does engage in an affair with Kinmont. As in THE TEMP and FATAL ATTRACTION, this relationship can only be deadly---from the movie's opening sequence, we pretty much know who Kinmont really is. Add seedy Ben Cross as Matt's associate/rival who coerces his women to have sex with him to "advance their careers" and the setup is constructed for the movie's obvious ending. Cross' performance is so over the top; he has three scenes in his pool where the dialogue is exactly the same; only the third one elicits a different response from his victim. The movie downplays morality in its own subtle ways; sure Dennison feels guilty for what he does but he's constantly tempted and ruled by his third leg. A friend of his (played by director Nick Longovella) tells him that he's gone through a divorce after telling his wife about his affair; he tells Denison not to tell the truth; his wife's better off not knowing. The acting is good: Kinmont has the vulnerability and the venom to carry off her role; Denison is middle-aged studly and stoic; and it's nice to see Jennifer O'Neill again, even if she has little to do. This is one of those almost erotic movies, that does sustain interest, and it is well done.
- Written by
Director(s): Nick VallelongaCast: Robert R. Shafer, Kathleen Kinmont, Talisa Soto