Reviews

Femme Fatale

3

It opens like Mission: Impossible grafted onto a lesbian skin-flick. But the steamy Cannes Film Festival diamond heist that introduces our femme (Rebecca Romijn-Stamos) is just the prelude to this malicious little meta-thriller. As the sexy thief bolts with the loot and assumes the identity of an American ambassador's wife, attracting the attention of paparazzo Antonio Banderas, a jigsaw plot of double-crosses and fractured fates starts to scatter and reform. Delighting in outrageous convolution and wild coincidence, writer/director Brian De Palma hides the clues in plain sight, seducing with style before pulling the rug away.

It's tricksy, all right. Too damn tricksy, some might say - - irritable US critics and dismal box office ensured the movie never collared a UK cinema release. But this elegant joke never wears bare, thanks largely to a bravado show of self-possessed sexuality from Romijn-Stamos. No blue bodypaint here, but she still has the X-factor.

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