Tuesday, July 31, 2012


Year: 1973
Director: Brian De Palma
Writer: Brian De Palma, Louisa Rose
Genre: Horror: Mystery, Black Comedy

Coming into Sisters I had no idea of what to expect other than, well, sisters. What I ended up seeing was a wholly enjoyably odd feature. However, try and tell me to peg exactly what about it was so good and it might be hard to say.

At the start of the film you see people competing in a simple gameshow. Two of the people featured in the game show decide to come home together and from that slightly unusual introduction things get much weirder. On the next day, the man wakes up to hear the gal from the show arguing with another woman. Although he wants to sneakily leave, the woman then finds him and begs him to stay, so he does. Unfortunately, he ends up being murdered by the creepy other girl. This kicks the whole film off.

What I enjoyed so much about the film was that it was hard to get a clear idea about what was even going on. Was the woman who witnesses the murder making this whole scene up or did it really happen? Are there really two girls or is there only one? Who is the other girl - is she the sister as the title suggests? Is it actually someone else who is pulling the strings? I loved being in a weird sense of reality and never being sure of what was what. Despite this description though, it was a fairly straightforward film. It wasn't all trippy or reality-shifting like some.

Perhaps the most unexpected thing about Sisters is how funny it is. There's no doubt that the desire when making this film was to have a lot of amusing stuff along a seriously messed up mystery. I consider it black comedy since it shouldn't really be as funny as it is that there was what was at one point called a  "racially-charged murder". Despite a lot of things that aren't at all funny about the movie the characters managed to be big jokes sometimes. I really enjoyed the dichotomy.

Sisters is a movie I'd happily recommend. After seeing it I now want to watch a lot more of Brian De Palma's work. Beyond this, I've only seen Carrie, Phantom of the Paradise, and Scarface.

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