The wife (Genevieve Bujold) and daughter of a New Orleans real estate developer (Cliff Robertson) are kidnapped the night of their 10 year anniversary and killed in the botched recovery. Sixteen years later in Florence, where the couple initially met, he discovers his wife's dead ringer (Bujold again) and delves into a state of fixation and compulsion. Well-crafted Brian De Palma film, with a melodramatic script by Paul Schrader, is still an egregious Alfred Hitchcock appropriation (Bernard Herrmann score to boot), here a Vertigo reworking with a climactic scene that laughably mimics Dial M for Murder (It would be interesting to do a shot by shot analysis of De Palma and The Master's work just to see how much is actually borrowed). Robertson is excellent as the brooding lead as is John Lithgow as his snaky partner.
*** out of ****