He literally foregrounds the answer in multiple shots, but it's still a shock when it comes. Primarily because you spend most of the runtime questioning just what the hell this movie actually is. A collection of cool sequences and concepts cut from prior pictures is one answer, De Palma's homage to his own prior homages. The serpent of cinema swallowing its own tail as it wraps around a breast.
An interesting and suspenseful movie that might not make much sense if closely scrutinized but it delivers in narrative purpose and pacing. Romijn makes for a compelling lead and get to show her range but Banderas is miscast but servicable. Great support from Henry and Coyote though. Camera work is amazing as is the score from Sakamoto. Probably the last decent film from De Palma.
Generally, Brian De Palma is not the director you should look to for a take on female psychology—he's too enamored of male fantasies, and the two are barely tangent. But I'd be curious to know what women cinephiles make of this one. Its good girl/bad girl split powers an intriguing inner life: the "good girl" may be safer, but there's real satisfaction in knowing she could be the "bad girl" if she really wanted.
What the! Inconceivably brazen film, the apotheosis of De Palm's cinema so far, perfect symbiosis of style and content. What this film does in the final 10 minutes is positively confounding, a grand testament to the dream-like quality of cinema, the visualisation of our wildest desires. Bold film from a filmmaker who dared to challenge the conventions of trash by offering it to us as art. I accept your offer.
To some extent, De Palma knows how to lead the viewer by the nose and turns Rebecca Romijn into a really bad bitch. Yet, the ending was compeletely flat. The blue room with running water was my favorite. Banderas looked funnily misplaced as if transported from some Almodovar's movie.