Posted by: kfugrip | March 14, 2007

Hypnosis, Murder, and Quebec… #37

Sisters, by Brian DePalma is a piece of 70’s exploitation. A Hitchcockian (poor DePalma) tale about two conjoined twins who are separated physically but not mentally, travels down what seems today to be a well beaten path. The problem with many horror/thrillers like this is if you are waiting for the gimmick or twist then it loses some of it’s punch because you’ve been watching films like this since you were little… at least I have.

My Mom is a big horror movie fan and we used to watch tons of them growing up. When we, my brother and I, first started renting movies in West Virginia there were many horror films that got our Dad’s hard earned money. It’s odd that Sisters wasn’t one I had seen already.

I will not spoil anything but I will say that the film lost it’s grip on me when it veered into hypnosis and a flashback that science couldn’t explain. Doling out the exposition is hard in a film like this but some of the techniques that DePalma uses are distracting and outlandish. Let me add to the pile that I hate, HATE, split screen. You want to talk about distracting… why can’t we just inter-cut those shots? I don’t get it, the fascination with split screen. During film school my class and the classes surrounding me, were obsessed with the split screen. Their answer to dramatic questions was showing multiple things happening so you wouldn’t notice that their twenty year old friend was playing their 20 year old girlfriend’s father.

DePalma is talented and there are some themes and motifs echoing back on themselves and enriching the film. The voyeur element is prevalent and reflected in the title of the show Danielle is on a the opening of the film, Peeping Toms. I also like the music by Bernard Herrmann. It’s a score that doesn’t bother me like most non-diegetic music does. It’s no wonder DePalma is accused of ripping off Hitchcock all the time though.

I give this one 2 stars. Not a fan.



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