Filmmaker Allan Arkush reassesses Brian De Palma's 2002 film

By Clark Collis
November 07, 2017 at 10:55 AM EST

Femme Fatale

  • Movie

Director Brian De Palma’s 2002 movie Femme Fatale wasn’t a big hit with either critics or the public. But that hasn’t stopped the Trailers From Hell website from kicking off a week-long appreciation of the Carrie auteur with an examination of the Rebecca Romijn- and Antonio Banderas-starring erotic thriller.

“It was at the Cannes Film Festival that De Palma got the idea to write and direct a heist film, a noir with an elaborate dream sequence structure,” says filmmaker Allan Arkush (Rock ‘n’ Roll High School) in his commentary. “He feels that it’s his most intuitive and unconscious movie, that it plays like a jazz improvisation. Indeed, it has all his favorite tropes — voyeurism, guilt, and tons of technique. At the very center of it all is Rebecca Romijn, who gets to play four different characters, which is a lot to ask for in her first major role. She’s a double-crossing black widow who gets a second chance when she meets her doppelgänger. Just saying that out loud is confusing.”

Watch Arkush’s full — and increasing fulsome — commentary, above.

Femme Fatale

  • Movie
  • R
  • 112 minutes
  • Brian De Palma