Dressed to Kill Reviews
Filled with stunning camerawork (the camera is always moving) and many tense scenes & some terrific twists & turns.
Although dialogue & acting is a little tongue in cheek the suspense is pounding. A genuinely gripping thriller staring Michael Caine...throughly enjoyed this 80's Cult Classic.
There's are scenes where Angie Dickinson doesn't talk much, it's like me being very quiet, that's always nice and also the soundtrack is absolutely phenomenal. I love the soundtrack. The film does have a shocking ending however I do not have the time to go into that right now, but yeah the film is worth checking out if you're a Brian DePalma fan.
~October 30, 2015~
We begin our story regular housewife, played by Angie Dickinson, who after awakening from a very beautiful dream sequence goes and meets up with her psychiatrist Michael Caine. This meeting doesn't seem to bring anything new to the table so she decides to go to an art gallery where in an amazing sequence of following her, as if in a seductive cat and mouse game, as she tries to calmly and without drawing attention to herself rebuke the seduction of this very caricature version of a late seventies early eighties man. After the sequence is said and done and she does the implausible deed and goes through with what she feels she thinks she needs to do...SPOILERS...she's killed off and the rest of the movie is just the murder mystery being looked at by Nancy Allen's character, Michael Caine's character, and a lot of other amazing performances. Even a turn by a pre-NYPD Blue Dennis Franz with more hair. Eventually the ending and the big twist come about and I will not reveal it out of respect but it needs to be seen it will kind of leave you saying wha...and What?! Let's just say I kicked my legs in the air because the twist threw me off my feet.
I feel Dressed to Kill is Brian De Palma's artistic masterwork still to this day it trumps his whole filmography, except with Carrie being his most visually interesting, but besides that Dressed to Kill is Brian De Palma at his artistic peak. I recommend this movie to anyone who loves suspense films, murder mysteries, artistic cinema...In fact I can recommend this movie to pretty much everybody with the exception of those who are easily turned in by nudity and the erotic. All the naughty send little kids from the room stuff is done tastefully and without the sleaze. If you can get past it, especially the first 10 mins, you will enjoy this movie. I highly recommend it and I cannot wait to watch it again.
"Brian De Palma invites you to invites you to a showing of the latest fashion in murder."
De Palma's nasty big-budget movie was way-controversial back in the day. 35 years later it is hard to look at it as "controversial." Over the passing of time, the sick and twisted plot of "Dressed to Kill" is difficult to take at all seriously, but it is impossible to not take full note of it's odd cinematic artistry.
De Palma's love of Hitchcock morphed into what would most likely have been a film he would have made had been De Palma's age in 1979. Passing an homage to Hitchcock, "Dressed to Kill" almost feels like a Hitchcock film.
Ralf D. Bode cinematography is brilliant. And Pino Donaggio's musical score is equally stunning. But both are obviously working closely within De Palma's context. As are all four leading actors. Michael Caine and Keith Gordon play their roles with tongues firmly in place. Nancy Allen's performance sometimes seems 'off-key' but it somehow makes perfect sense. Surprisingly, it is Angie Dickinson who delivers the strongest performance. Actually, it is the only time I think I've ever seen her "act." -- Had the film not been so polarizing she probably would have secured an Oscar.
From every angle and within each frame of film, "Dressed to Kill" is offensive, cruel and wrong. No matter how many times I've seen De Palma attempt to deny this, it is just a cold hard fact. "Dressed to Kill" is one twisted epic of a horror film. Misogyny, homophobia and transphobia are all pushed to a a whole new level. But if we think about it, can't the same be said of most Hitchcock films? I think it can.
In many ways, "Dressed to Kill" captures the final year in a decade of sexual and civil rights confusion. With hindsight, it is clear that De Palma knew what he was doing. He wasn't trying to communicate "correct" information or any level of "well-intent" -- he was pulling all of the 70's cultural fears and artistically framing them into one hell of a darkly-erotic horror film.
I see no reason to outline or hint at the plot of this movie. If you are not already familiar with it you are either not going to like the movie or you are too young to know about it. Suffice to say it is unique. And most importantly, it is scary.
There is one portion of the film which I have to mention. The portion is supposed to be in NYC, but it was actually shot inside the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The sequence is not short. It runs for approximately 14 minutes. The camerawork, music, editing and acting come together in magical ways. Even when De Palma utilizes an intentionally outmoded technique re: memory -- it works to the film's advantage.
It is also interesting to me that this film remains rather shocking. The sex and violence are jolting. For optimal enjoyment: Clear your mind of "political correctness", turn off the lights, sit back and just let this beautifully shot and horribly nasty horror film weave it's spell.
In it's own cruelly twisted logic, "Dressed to Kill" is an important film.