Curves that kill turns into cumbersome flick that blows chunks.
Borrowing from the notion of the anti-hero and the female antagonist of the classic genre of film noir, critically attacked Brian DePlamaâ€™s newest feature is a fallback to the similar pattern of filmmaking from his own repertoire of films as well as from his most influential filmmaker master of suspense -Alfred Hitchcock. Rather than reinventing the genre, Deplamaâ€™s Femme Fatale is a contemporary not-so visionary twist in fate flick which will attract plenty of attention from the viewing public and will most likely not silence the critics. As foreshadowed by Billy Wilderâ€™s Double Indemnity-Deplama hopes to emulate great filmmaking, – perhaps that is wishful thinking.
The film starts off with plenty of promise-with what turns out to be arguably the best sequence of the entire picture with an elaborate montage of a million dollar jewel heist scene with the backdrop of an actual 2001 film premiere at the red carpet ceremonies of the Grand Palais of the Cannes Film Festival. A shapely tall, very hot blonde lesbian tall (Rebecca Romijn-Stamos- X-Men) has masterminded her own operation to take off with all the goods and some very unhappy people. A push forward in time-a full seven years!, sends the protagonist on her miscalculated wild goose chase, also on the chase is a misplaced paparazzi photographer (Antonio Banderas-Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever) who gets caught up in her spiderâ€™s web-question is does he get out? But ultimately they are not the only ones to get shafted-as the narrative will most likely make more than one viewer feel as if they watched a piece of pop-culture retro-do you remember the Dallas episode that saw one entire season as a dream segment? What is the reward of watching this teasingly B-flick of steamy lingerie scenes, some deception, intrigue and some more skin? With dreams, visions and double endings-the film rewards the viewer with an entertainingly cheese-fest that goes the distance until the tragic cue of a major plot twist which makes this film into a purely second grade narrative mess.
Inspired by his own work- this film has definite resemblance in visuals and narrative of Dressed to Kill and the principle theme of Hitchcockâ€™s Vertigo. The plot is constructed in such a way that the viewer gets pieces of information interrupted by the play in the multiple faces and facets of â€“la femme fatale. Carrying her first film, Romijn-Stamos looks right for the part- the super model convincingly gets the beautiful aspect on cue, but as soon as the dialogue sets in-
well after the 30 minute mark- the persona of her character loses all the edge-she comes off looking less mentally tough and less compelling.
Always enjoyable in a Deplama film is the filmmakerâ€™s emphasis on the art of cinematography and the construction of the shot. The visuals arenâ€™t ground-breaking, but the camera angles and tracking shots are eye-candy for all film connoisseurs. Femme Fatale is definitely sexy but the deep lack in narrative coherence and the lack of rewarding the viewer with a payoff great ending makes this as unsatisfying as the experience of Lynchâ€™s 80% brilliant film of Mulholland Drive. This is lot better than Deplamaâ€™s recent currently forays of Mission to Mars and Snake Eyes, but it still doesnâ€™t reach the bar of his previous classics of Blow-out, The Untouchables or even Scarface.