Diabolique

  • Film
  • Thrillers
Remake of Clouzot's 1954 chiller with an arty veneer. Stone's the hard-bitten mistress and Adjani the fearful, ailing wife of Palminteri, sadistic head of a Philadelphia boarding school. Bates is the sassy private eye who smells something fishy after Palminteri's reported missing. We, of course, have already seen the ladies drown him in the bath, so how come it seems he may still be alive or, at the very least, haunting his killers? Working from a rickety script, Chechik coughs up a string of Grand Guignol clichés and attempts to give a 'modern' twist to a plot over-familiar from inferior imitations. The cast is wasted: Adjani, suitably vulnerable in the Véra Clouzot role, has little scope to deliver the raw emotions she's so good at; Stone is two-dimensionally terse and tough; Bates is lumbered with some dubious gags about mastectomy; and Palminteri mugs as the sneering ogre. Not scary.

Release details

Duration: 107 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Jeremiah Chechik
Screenwriter: Don Roos
Cast: Chazz Palminteri
Kathy Bates
Sharon Stone
Spalding Gray
Isabelle Adjani
Shirley Knight
Allen Garfield
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