IMDb > Obsession (1976)
Obsession
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Obsession (1976) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
6.8/10   5,035 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Brian De Palma (story) and
Paul Schrader (story) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Obsession on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
13 September 1976 (Sweden) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The love story that will scare the life out of you See more »
Plot:
A businessman becomes fixated upon a young woman who resembles his dead wife. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination See more »
NewsDesk:
(38 articles)
[De Palma’s] Vision
 (From MUBI. 3 June 2014, 5:35 AM, PDT)

Top Ten Brian De Palma Climaxes
 (From SoundOnSight. 13 May 2014, 9:05 PM, PDT)

Notebook Soundtrack Mix #4: "Fragments of the Mirror: The Music of Bernard Herrmann"
 (From MUBI. 22 October 2013, 1:58 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Intriguing,dreamlike if slow romantic romantic thriller,certainly NOT just a Vertigo rip off See more (52 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Cliff Robertson ... Michael Courtland

Geneviève Bujold ... Elizabeth Courtland / Sandra Portinari

John Lithgow ... Robert Lasalle
Sylvia Kuumba Williams ... Maid (as Sylvia 'Kuumba' Williams)
Wanda Blackman ... Amy Courtland

J. Patrick McNamara ... Third Kidnapper (as Patrick McNamara)
Stanley J. Reyes ... Insp. Brie
Nick Kreiger ... Farber (as Nick Krieger)
Stocker Fontelieu ... Dr. Ellman
Don Hood ... Ferguson
Andrea Esterhazy ... D'Annunzio
Thomas Carr ... Paper Boy
Tom Felleghy ... Italian Businessman
Nella Simoncini Barbieri ... Mrs. Portinari
John Creamer ... Justice of the Peace
Regis Cordic ... Newscaster

Loraine Despres ... Jane
Clyde Ventura ... Ticket Agent
Fain M. Cogrove ... Secretary
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Harper ... Man In Airport (uncredited)
Warren Kenner ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Brian De Palma 
 
Writing credits
Brian De Palma (story) and
Paul Schrader (story)

Paul Schrader (screenplay)

Produced by
Harry N. Blum .... producer
Robert S. Bremson .... executive producer
George Litto .... producer
 
Original Music by
Bernard Herrmann 
 
Cinematography by
Vilmos Zsigmond 
 
Film Editing by
Paul Hirsch 
 
Art Direction by
Jack Senter 
 
Set Decoration by
Jerry Wunderlich 
 
Costume Design by
Frank Balchus 
 
Production Management
Frank Beetson .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Wiliam Pool .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
David M. Ronne .... sound
Dan Sable .... sound effects editor
 
Special Effects by
Joe Lombardi .... special effects
 
Stunts
Bob Herron .... stunt coordinator
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Nick McLean .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Paul B. Clay .... music editor
Louis Halsey .... choral director (uncredited)
Bernard Herrmann .... conductor (uncredited)
Laurie Johnson .... conductor: finale (uncredited)
Christopher Palmer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Rachel Griffiths .... script supervisor
Hannah Scheel .... script supervisor
Rachel Ticotin .... production assistant
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
98 min | Australia:94 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Finland:K-16 | France:U | Iceland:16 | Sweden:15 | UK:AA (original rating) | UK:12 (video rating) | UK:12 (video rating) (2011) | USA:PG | West Germany:16 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Original title of the film was "Déjà Vu".See more »
Goofs:
Anachronisms: With exception of old cars, nothing in flashbacks to 1959 (hair, clothes, etc.) to remotely indicate that scenes weren't set in mid Seventies.See more »
Quotes:
Sandra Portinari:How did she die?
Michael Courtland:I killed her.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
35 out of 41 people found the following review useful.
Intriguing,dreamlike if slow romantic romantic thriller,certainly NOT just a Vertigo rip off, 30 March 2005
Author: DrLenera

Obsession has been somewhat overshadowed by some of director Brian De Palma's other Hitchcock-influenced suspense thrillers like Dressed to Kill and Body Double. This is a shame,because Obsession is one of his very best. It's a very slow moving film,and requires total immersion in it's suffocating atmosphere. And it's certainly NOT simply a rip off of Vertigo.

What De Palma does is take the basic idea of Hitchcock's film-a man losing a woman and than encountering her 'double'and than spin a very different story off it. In fact,De Palma's 1984 film Body Double copies a lot more of Vertigo! Some parts of Obsession seem closer to Rebecca,and there are some obvious references {scissors from Dial M For Murder,for example}. However,Obsession is also entirely it's own film. It has an atmosphere and feel all it's own.

Although there are suspenseful bits in the film,and despite a very emphatic but appropriate score by Bernard Herrmann which in it's own way also tells the story,Obsession is a film of restraint,it's characters seeming to move in a dream,making Cliff Robertson's undoubtedly bland portrayal of the hero almost appropriate. There is a slow,balletic grace to the film. De Palma's signature show off moments are often less flashy but amongst his most brilliant,check out the scene with Robertson as he watches the creation of a mausoleum for his dead wife,and see if you notice the beautifully subtle transition to 18 years later. Some of the scenes of the heroine {a simply delightful Genevieve Bujold}in Robertson's house are extremely eerie and contain a very slow but effective 360 degree camera spin,while the flashback scenes near the end are very cleverly done-notice the way Bujold's character as an adult is put into the flashbacks when she was actually a child.

More than any other De Palma film,this has moments of pure beauty,often when film and score combine {one could write a whole review of the score itself}. One example is the scene when Robertson enters the church where he first met his wife. Vilmos Zsigmond's gorgeous photography and the quiet organ and string piece of music used create such a strong,almost ghostly atmosphere,and than Robertson sees Bujold,and she turns round in slow motion while the score's often used wordless choir plays. Beautiful.

The film's Big Twist is probably guessable,and any potentially questionable {you might consider the 'twist' in poor taste} elements are not really answered at the end. However,Obsession is a much more compassionate film than Vertigo and indeed most of De Palma's other films,which,while often brilliant pieces of cinema tend to treat it's characters like pawns to move to the next great set piece. Obsession is a very rewarding and satisfying experience it you relax and let it take over you.

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See more (52 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Obsession (1976)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Ah, the Nostalgia (spoils)! kenichiku
He Even Used Hitchcock's Composer goooooost8
Comparing it to Vertigo - spoilers ezkaban
1959 Scenes - Wha????? SamticJudd
Alternate ending (SPOILS) Hyag
This film is a tribute to not only 'Vertigo', but Hitchcock in general! yj270
See more »

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