Critic Consensus: For better as well as worse, Passion is vintage De Palma sexploitation -- although with a storyline sillier than most, it fails to generate as much heat as his steamiest work.
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Critic Reviews for Passion
What we have here is a tale of lust, deception, manipulation and murder. Quintessential De Palma, in other words.
One's ultimate reaction is likely to one of indifference, bemusement or outright disdain considering the pedigree of the filmmaker helming the project: Brian De Palma.
A throwaway by a gifted filmmaker who has run out of ideas.
Despite De Palma's lavish proof of what he can accomplish with classical technique, the movie comes off as too much for too little, a collection of mechanisms that decorate mechanisms.
After the clinically dull first half, it's more desperate pantry raid than feast.
Audience Reviews for Passion
For the most part, this is a solid thriller whose technical brilliance (mainly the fantastic art direction, mise-en-scène, cinematography, editing and score) is no surprise for a Brian De Palma movie. It is just too bad though that the story collapses in such a ridiculous, incoherent end.
I thought this was quite good. Visually striking with strong performances, and there was some type of logic at the end. Initially I didn't know what to make of it, but it grew on me as I watched on. Pretty unlikable pair of heroines here. I found Dani the most sympathetic, and she was pretty warped too. Bitching, backstabbing and manipulation with a bit of horror thrown in. What's not to like!
With a talented director and cast I went into this expecting some trashy fun, but it was just trash. I'm on the record in my other reviews stating I hate manipulative movies and this film is one of the biggest offenders in that regard. The plot is ludicrous thanks to contrivances and implausibilities that drove me up the wall while watching. The acting isn't even very good either. Rachel McAdams was clearly out of her depth playing the bad girl and Noomi Rapace is bland. Both of them can and have done much better work in the past. The movie seems to move at a snails pace at spots too, but picks up at the end before the ending makes everything crash and burn. The movie can be nice to look at, which is why I'm not giving it the lowest score you can, but that was really the only redeeming quality I found while watching this. Stay away.
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