A blog dealing with either the joy of cinema or the agony of cinema--nothing in between.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
After the success of his debut film Knife in the Water, Roman Polanski set out to direct his first English language film which he also cowrote, a disturbing psychodrama/horror film. Starring the beautiful Catherine Deneuve as a shy young Belgian who works at a London salon and lives with her sister, to whom she is strangely attached. When the sister goes on vacation with the married man she is having an affair with, the young woman begins to see specters and other visions in the house. After taking a leave of absence from work, she barricades herself in the apartment while falling into a state of psychosis where even more sinister occurrences are about to take place. Deneuve does a fine job in a tricky role where she hardly speaks and plays a character who is uninterested in sex on one level and fascinated by it on another. Polanski succeeds at making two kinds of films here, the ghost story with the boo moments and the psychological drama where we are drawn into the atypical behavior of the heroine. Polanski's considerable directorial skills are on display, and he never ceases to make a shot interesting, where in other hands this could have ended up being repugnant.