THIS is how I plan to spend my Halloween…
Isn’t this one of the most iconic images in film? A pig-blood-drenched Carrie White, about to exact revenge on her tormentors…a great Halloween horror film, and just one of the many Brian DePalma masterpieces…so let’s take a trip back and dip into some of the master’s greatest shockers!
Brian DePalma has directed some of the best films ever – classics such as “Scarface” and “Phantom Of The Paradise”, as well as great action films like “The Untouchables” and “Mission: Impossible” – and for a period in the late 70’s and early 80’s, DePalma was creating brilliant thrillers that evoked the best of Alfred Hitchcock – with a deliciously naked twist…
DePalma revamped the sexploitation film – taking what was a drive-in staple of the 70’s and turning them into high class, glossy thrillers with strong female characters who were empowered – and preyed upon. Let’s get started with some great suspense thrillers!
Dressed To Kill – 1980
A mysterious woman murders one of a psychiatrist’s patients, and now she’s after the prostitute who witnessed it”
DePalma pushed the envelope with this 1980 thriller starring Angie Dickinson, who bared all to tell the story of a sexually-repressed married woman who pays the ultimate price for her indiscretion…and unleashes a killer who can’t be stopped.
Nancy Allen is the prostitute that witnesses the murder, and it’s up to Angie Dickinson’s son to team with her to catch his Mom’s killer – and save her. A classic thriller with an unrated blu-ray out that includes a ton of extra supplements!
Aside from suspense, Brian DePalma has other “obsessions” as well….
Body Double – 1984
DePalma’s other obsession was sex. SEX. He pushed the boundaries in “Dressed To Kill”, and tore them apart in “Body Double.”
Body Double – 1984
Melanie Griffith stars as “Holly Body”, and adult film star who is hired to be a “Body Double”…but not for a movie, for a murder plot!
Craig Wasson stars as the nebbish guy who stays in a house that his new “friend, Frank, asks him to house sit…and of course, from his window you can see a young woman posing seductively – DePalma’s homage to Hitchcock’s “Rear Window”…
Porn star Annette Haven was originally cast for the role of “Holly”, but Columbia Pictures decided to turn her down when their executives saw what kind of movies she had been making. Haven later stated that she was happy because of that, because she hadn’t liked the script and hadn’t liked to be in a film with gory violence.
Brian De Palma originally planned for this to be the first Hollywood film to boast unsimulated sex scenes. That didn’t happen, but an unrated blu-ray shows off a ton of nudity and more…
But when it comes to classic DePalma shockers, there is nothing better than this:
Carrie – 1976. And then there is “Carrie”, simply the greatest horror thriller ever made!
No need to state the plot, except to say that Sissy Spacek is brilliant in the title role – a girl with special powers who seeks revenge against those who torment her…
Naked Princess Leia!
Here is some great trivia about the casting of “Carrie” and another iconic female role:
George Lucas and Brian De Palma held a joint audition for “Carrie” and “Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope”. There is a long-standing rumor that originally, Sissy Spacek was cast as Princess Leia, and Carrie Fisher as Carrie, but when Fisher refused to appear in nude scenes and Spacek was willing to do them, they switched parts.
However, Fisher refuted this story in a Premiere magazine article called “The Force Wasn’t With Them,” about actors who auditioned unsuccessfully for Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. That article quoted Fisher as saying, “Not only do I love being nude, I would’ve been nude then… But anyway, it’s total bullshit that Fisher refused to play Carrie.”
P.J. Soles Spills The Beans On Spielberg!
And what about this trivia? In a 2010 interview with “The A.V. Club”, “Carrie” co-star P.J. Soles said that Steven Spielberg often came to the set at Brian De Palma’s invitation because DePalma told him that there were “a lot of cute girls down here.”
Soles said that Spielberg asked out most of the women on the set, Soles included, and Amy Irving was the only one who accepted!
“Carrie” is a masterpiece, and brilliantly directed by a master filmmaker – check out the special editions Blu-rays of all three of these thriller – there is tons of great extra material from each film!
And don’t forget, DePalma has a number of classic films like “Scarface” – read all about them here!
I’m ready for Halloween!
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