A testament to the state of Hollywood films in the late '60s. Made absolutely no sense - but in the boring way, not the fun way. Why was no one questioning her... "method acting" I guess you'd call it? Why was it so important and then so pointless that they were so alike?? (Sigh.) I was really hoping for a sordid campy Vertigo.
**1/2. A film that doesn't have a life of its own. A bit of The Big Knife of the same director, a bit of Vertigo, a few thoughts about the distinction between film and movie and the role of the Producer/Director pair. Lylah Clare is a mix of Marlene Dietrich and Marilyn Monroe and Elsie Brinkmann doesn't seem to have had a life before meeting Peter Finch. A DVD zone Aldrich or Novak completists. Only.
This film had me rolling. I don't know whether to give it a high or low rating for being so WTF-worthy it was hilarious, I've never been one to appreciate Kim Novak and her constantly moving drawn-on eyebrows (see Bell Book and Candle to watch them in all their glory) so her acting in this, complete with a strange dubbed accent that comes out of nowhere, is pretty insufferable.
Robert Aldrich's camp classic certainly has its moments, but doesn't quite live up to its lurid reputation. A great cast in a hilariously over-the-top script, but as the film's enigmatic central figure, Kim Novak falls short. It takes a long time to get to the psychological weirdness promised by the premise, and even then it doesn't quite go far enough. But the ridiculous ending almost makes up for it all.