Body Heat

1981

Body Heat

Critics Consensus

Made from classic noir ingredients and flavored with a heaping helping of steamy modern spice, Body Heat more than lives up to its evocative title.

98%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 41

80%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 10,402
User image

Watch it now

Body Heat Photos

Movie Info

Lawrence Kasdan's first directorial effort is a throwback to the early days of film noir. The scene is a beastly hot Florida coastal town, where naive attorney Ned (William Hurt) is entranced by the alluring Matty (Kathleen Turner in her film debut). Ned is manipulated into killing Matty's much older husband (Richard Crenna), the plan being that Ned's knowledge of legal matters will enable both conspirators to escape scott-free. This might have been the case, had not Matty been infinitely craftier than the cloddish Ned. Just when it seems as though the film has run out of plot twists, we're handed yet another surprise.

Cast

William Hurt
as Ned Racine
Kathleen Turner
as Matty Walker
Richard Crenna
as Edmund Walker
Ted Danson
as Peter Lowenstein
J.A. Preston
as Oscar Grace
Mickey Rourke
as Teddy Lewis
Kim Zimmer
as Mary Ann
Lanna Saunders
as Roz Kraft
Michael Ryan
as Miles Hardin
Carola McGuinness
as Heather Kraft
Larry Marko
as Judge Costanze
Thom Sharp
as Michael Glenn
Ruth Thom
as Mrs. Singer
Robert Traynor
as Prison Trustee
Ruth P. Strahan
as Betty, the Housekeeper
Filomena Triscari
as Hostess at Tulios
Bruce A. Lee
as Man on the Beach
View All

Critic Reviews for Body Heat

All Critics (41) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (40) | Rotten (1)

  • There's no mistaking the fact that Kasdan loves the tawdry genre he's working in.

    May 9, 2017 | Full Review…
  • Lawrence Kasdan's 1981 noir fable is highly derivative in its overall conception, but it finds some freshness in its details.

    Feb 8, 2008 | Full Review…
  • Though Lawrence Kasdan's film is set in today's South Florida, its characters move through an atmosphere that suggests the confluences of decor and demeanor in a 1940s film noir.

    Feb 8, 2008 | Full Review…
  • There's no denying the narrative confidence that brings the film to its unfashionably certain double-whammy conclusion.

    Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • While Body Heat involves murder, fraud, a weak hero led astray and a seductive, double-dealing broad, it also incorporates something new: a sexual explicitness that the old films could only hint at.

    May 20, 2003 | Rating: 4/5
  • Body Heat is good enough to make film noir play like we hadn't seen it before.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Body Heat

  • Dec 27, 2015
    An obvious throwback to the classic noir films of the 40s and 50s, "Body Heat" like, "The Long Goodbye" (1973), serves to remind us how truly great the 40s and 50s were to cinema. It is surprisingly sexual, albeit in a more graphic sense rather than via steamy innuendo, which may turn off purists, and conversely seems a little too derivative at times as well. Still, Body Heat wraps things up to a more than satisfactory conclusion. It's ultimately a good dose of fun, albeit with some slightly uneven pacing
    Super Reviewer
  • May 26, 2012
    Oh my goodness it is so Dramatic wit a capital D, but in a good, film noirish, sweat-dripping-off-the-body kind of way.
    Jennifer X Super Reviewer
  • Nov 29, 2011
    William Hurt is one of the finest actors of his generation, and his performance in "Body Heat" only proves that statement further. Also, there's a great script here. Fantastic dialogue.
    Stephen E Super Reviewer
  • Oct 30, 2011
    I really admire William Hurt. I think that he is one of the best actors of his generation, and his performance is Body Heat is wonderful. It's one of my main reasons for liking this film. But that is not the greatest thing about this film. To me, it is. But to you, who knows? You could say that you liked the performances from the supporting cast or the smooth Altman-like cinematography or even the dense and intelligent writing from Lawrence Kasdan, and all of these wood be good answers. Especially the writing. The writing here is fantastic. The dialogue is so perfect and meaningful, and it fits so perfectly with these characters. When they say it, you believe it because it's the kinds of things people talk about. AFI has this film listed on their "100 Thrills" list, yet I didn't find it all that thrilling. It was dramatic and some scenes were tense, but this, to me, is what a romantic picture is, or rather should be. And whaddaya know. Body Heat is on AFI's "100 Passions" list. Ha.
    Stephen E Super Reviewer

Body Heat Quotes

News & Features