An exploitation auteur's bloody valentine to cinema, Brian De Palma’s saucy thriller is too derivative to shock yet too lavishly dressed to dismiss.
Hitchcock haunts its shower scenes, killer transsexuals, dodgy therapists, neurotic blondes (Angie Dickinson) and wicked rug-pulls.
Scooby-Doo haunts a daft detective subplot involving nancy Allen’s prostitute and Keith Gordon’s amateur inventor.
But De Palma’s direction transforms plagiarism into postmodern play, where doubling devices, steadicam seductions and self-references (Carrie gets nods) display a droll love of artifice.
Eyebrow wryly raised, Michael Caine gets its sly measure.