Alexandra “Alex” Forrest is the main antagonist in the 1987 film Fatal Attraction. Fatal Attraction is a 1987 American psychological thriller film directed by Adrian Lyne and written by James Dearden. It is based on Dearden’s 1980 short film Diversion
Alex Forrest is played by Glenn Close who is the scariest one night stand / creepy ex that ever lived. A roll in the sheets leads to a boiled bunny, kidnapping and straight up assault and murder!
Discussion of personality organization
Neurotic- borderline- psychotic
Discussion of delusional thinking
What is a delusion- A fixed belief that is not amenable to change in light of conflicting evidence. Their content may include a variety of different themes
Erotomanic delusion- When an individuals believes falsely that another person is in love with them.
What defenses is she using?
What could have led to the development of Alex?
Could have been the trauma of losing her father when she was 7 years old. Sounds like it could have been sudden since it was a heart attack. With him dying so earlier it could have had a negative impact on her ability to make meaningful connections with men. It may have also planted the seed in her head that people leave. Death can be a form of abandonment and anytime that she gets abandoned by a man in relationships it may bring about the strong feelings that they 7-year-old girl experienced
What was going on in the scene where she cuts her wrists?
At that moment it is more of a culmination of events that leads her to cutting her wrists. In this passionate love affair, Dan knows that it is a one-time thing but Alex is not privy to that information. She may believe that this is the beginning of a great relationship. It seems that they are sexually compatible they have the same interests (opera), they seem to have an understanding of each other’s job, she gets along with his dog. So at the dinner table she asks him where she stand in the relationship and he essentially tells her it was a one night thing. The strange thing is that he sleeps with her again. Which was probably very confusing. Then she gets angry again when he says that he is leaving an she tells him “id have more respect for you if you told me to fuck off.”
That moment seems to be the abandonment depression creeping up and she becomes angry yelling at him. When that doesn’t work she cuts her wrists possibly as a sign of I am in pain and I don’t know how to deal with it. Or it could be the emotional pain is so strong and I would rather feel physical pain than emotional pain. Or it could be her last ditch effort to get him to stay. Either way it works and he stays the night. To her that show that he cares and that is when the infatuation begins. That is the best thing that she can think of to not deal with the pain that she is feeling.
Why does her behavior begin to escalate if she wants him back?
Her behavior may begin to escalate either out of anger or because she has seen that it worked in the past. After she cut her wrists her stayed and she ended up getting what she wanted. There may be a piece of her that believes that if she engages in these grand gestures of showing up at it work, calling multiple times that he may come back to her. Or possibly she may be able to guilt him into a relationship.
Why did the Bunny have to die?
The bunny seems to represent the first time that the reality of him having a wife, child and family hits Alex. Until that point Alex has met the wife and talked with her but she never really made the connection with family. The bunny may represent to her the family and happiness and that crushes her fantasy of her being with Dan. So to eliminate the happiness the bunny needs to die. She does not have a specific grudge against the bunny but the bunny does represent to her the family and its happiness.
Why would she kidnap the girl?
It is amazing how much things have changed over the course of the last 30 years. In the movie she walks into the school and takes the girl. Alex may have kidnapped the girl as a way of connection. If Alex is moving further down the personality organization towards psychosis it is possible that she is wanting to take over the mother role and this is how she has developed that connection. I found it funny that she took the kid on the rollercoaster and was stone faced while the kid was scared it was like a showing her what her experience is. Going all over the place feeling out of control and then doing it all over again.
The term acting out thus properly refers to any behavior that is assumed to be an expression of transference attitudes that the patient does not yet feel safe enough to bring into treatment in words.
What is acted out may be predominantly self-destructive, or predominantly growth enhancing.
Can describe behavior that is driven by unconscious needs to master the anxiety associated with internally forbidden feelings and wishes, and with powerfully upsetting fears, fantasies and memories.
By enacting frightening scenarios, the unconsciously anxious person turns passive into active, transforming a sense of helplessness and vulnerability into an experience of agency and power, no matter how negative the drama that is played out.