One of Brian De Palma’s better thrillers (1976) — perhaps because its true auteur is neither De Palma nor screenwriter Paul Schrader but composer Bernard Herrmann, who contributed one of his last scores to the film. It was Herrmann who insisted on cutting the third act of Schrader’s already excessive script (a rather tortured hommage to Hitchcock’s Vertigo), about a businessman (Cliff Robertson) who feels responsible for the death of his wife (Genevieve Bujold) in a kidnapping plot, and who meets and marries her double 15 years later. There’s nothing in the aesthetic and neo-Freudian delirium within hailing distance of Vertigo, and the plot’s often more complicated than complex, but Herrmann’s overpowering score and De Palma’s endlessly circling camera movements do manage to cast a spell. With John Lithgow. 98 min. (JR)

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