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Diabolique (1996)

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The wife and mistress of the sadistic dean of an exclusive prep school conspire to murder him.

Director:

Jeremiah S. Chechik (as Jeremiah Chechik)

Writers:

Pierre Boileau (novel), Thomas Narcejac (novel) | 2 more credits »
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sharon Stone ... Nicole Horner
Isabelle Adjani ... Mia Baran
Chazz Palminteri ... Guy Baran
Kathy Bates ... Det. Shirley Vogel
Spalding Gray ... Simon Veatch
Shirley Knight ... Edie Danziger
Allen Garfield ... Leo Katzman
Adam Hann-Byrd ... Erik Pretzer
Donal Logue ... Video Photographer #1
Diana Bellamy ... Ms. Vawze
Clea Lewis ... Lisa Campos
J.J. Abrams ... Video Photographer #2 (as Jeffrey Abrams)
O'Neal Compton ... Irv Danziger
Bingo O'Malley ... Gannon
Stephen Liska ... PHP Officer
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Storyline

The wife and mistress of a cruel school master collaborate in a carefully planned and executed attempt to murder him. The plan goes well until the body, which has been strategically dumped, disappears. The strain starts to tell on the two women as a retired police investigator who is looking into the disappearance on a whim begins to think that they know more than they are telling, and their mental state is not helped when their victim is seen, apparently alive and well by one of the pupils. Written by Mark Thompson <mrt@oasis.icl.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Two women. One man. The combination can be murder.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence/terror, sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

22 March 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Diabólicas See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,524,055, 22 March 1996

Gross USA:

$17,000,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$35,300,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Gabriel Byrne, Jeremy Irons and Jack Nicholson all turned down the role of Guy Baran, where it ultimately went to Chazz Palminteri. See more »

Goofs

The lines of text on the computer monitor reach the bottom of the screen start scrolling. In the close-up, the text is just starting to be written again. See more »

Quotes

Edie Danziger: [finds the black and white 1966 film Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? playing on TV] Oh. Yeah. I'm gonna wait until this is in color.
See more »

Connections

Version of Crucible of Horror (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

In The Arms Of Love
Written by Marco Marinageli and Frank P. Maddlone
Performed by Sherry Williams
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Suckered by an American remake of 'Diabolique' (not that I'm bitter)
18 June 2005 | by lemon_magicSee all my reviews

I saw that 'Diabolique' was showing on a cable movie channel, and I had heard great things about it, and so I was prepared to be impressed and intrigued, and to improve my 'cultural literacy' in the process.

Instead, what I got was a draggy, lifeless 'film noir' remake with Sharon Stone and Chazz Palmintieri. The frustrating thing about the movie was that it was JUST GOOD ENOUGH and kept JUST ENOUGH of the elements of the original plot to make me hope that things would improve somehow. So I kept watching it. But it never did.

I am not Sharon Stone's biggest fan, but I acknowledge that she gave a compelling performance in "Casino", and that very few actresses past or present could have played her role better. (Joan Crawford or Betty Davis, maybe). And she's a black hole of bitterness and anger here -somehow sexually inviting and repellent at the same time. That doesn't make for comfortable viewing. There's the same problem with the lesbian undercurrents between the wife and the mistress - it ought to be titillating or erotic, but it's just stale and nasty. And Chazz Palmintieri is a great character actor( see 'The Usual Suspects' or "Bullets Over Broadway"), but the character he plays is such a flat-out son-of-a-bitch that you really don't want to watch him.

But the real the problem with the film is that they were going for dread and suspense, but the pacing and rhythms of each of the individual scenes was way off - empty and interminable. So the viewer wound up feeling dread and BOREDOM instead. That doesn't make for 'recommended film viewing'.

I still hope to seek out the original one of these days, so at least the remake didn't spoil anything. And some one else might like this version just fine on its own merits, depending on how big a Stone fan they are (it is really her movie - her character drives the events in the plot).


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