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Shattered Image (1998)

Traumatised rape victim Jessie (Anne Parillaud) is living a double life as a cool assassin on a mission and as a paranoid bride on her honeymoon.

Director:

Raoul Ruiz (as Raul Ruiz)

Writer:

Duane Poole
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
William Baldwin ... Brian
Anne Parillaud ... Jessie Markham
Lisanne Falk ... Paula / Laura
Graham Greene ... Detective
Bulle Ogier ... Mrs. Ford
Billy Wilmott Billy Wilmott ... Lamond
O'Neil Peart O'Neil Peart ... Simon
Leonie Forbes ... Isabel
Rick Ravanello ... Man in Restraurant
Marc Akerstream ... Man in Motorboat
Peter Hanlon ... Dr. Cohen / Dr. Tolan
Alwyn Scott Alwyn Scott ... Hotel Manager
Pablo Hoilett Pablo Hoilett ... Waiter / Waiter #2
Fay Ellington Fay Ellington ... Shop Clerk
Ilona Margolis Ilona Margolis ... Lucy
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Storyline

In New York, Jessie Markham is raped by a man with mask and now she is recovering from the rape and an attempted suicide. However her mind is confused and she lives two realities. In one life, she is a newly wed with Brian spending honeymoon in Jamaica with the guest Paula snooping around the couple. In the other life, she is a hit woman that executes men and Laura is her client that wants Brian killed. Which life is real? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Where does the dream end and reality begin?


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, sexuality and some language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 December 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Dupla See more »

Filming Locations:

Jamaica See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$31,859, 6 December 1998, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$102,523, 10 January 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Color:

Color
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Trivia

Last Movie For Marc Akerstream as an Actor See more »

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User Reviews

Osmosis of shattered images
22 July 2011 | by chaos-rampantSee all my reviews

I think a crucial point in developing an individual taste for cinema is to be able to unwaveringly focus on the things that we feel personally matter. To coast without distraction through the small handicaps that hamper and limit a film in pursuit of the spark of creative vision (assuming one such that matters to us exists). This is to be able to enjoy Argento for who he is rather than in spite of his storytelling deficiencies.

One such thing we have here. A package that looks from a distance as straight-to-video fodder as vehicle for an almost recognizable name, acting that is ho-hum, stilted dialogue. The reward for a casual watcher catching this on latenight TV might be simply to cope a smile at William Baldwin playing actor.

I come to this for the filmmaker though with his potent notions about convergent realities and fictions passing as real, as part of my quest on Raoul Ruiz. Coming from two films he did back in France, both crushingly dry and tedious, for his American debut he reverts back to the heady magic he weaved in his 80's stuff. Soaking in colors, strange portents, frames that become real; a reality hung askew from which we are transported back and forth into the folds of the imaginative mind.

The scaffold: two women (played by Anna Parillaud) as figments of the one damaged mind, each in her separate reality dreaming up the other. Transitions between the two worlds, mostly through sex or objects as mirrors (an acquarium, a painting, even -rather painfully obvious- the frame of what we're watching shattering into shards).

So there is one subconscious where all the hurt is arranged into a wish-fulfillment fantasy (the woman plays a contract killer paid to kill men, eventually discovers the target she falls in love with to be innocent), and the conscious mind in the other plane trying to cope with the anxieties of a situation real or imagined (as seeping back from the dream and flowing into it). It is all about this cinematic flow of a nightmare that renews itself - a half-way intelligent device, perhaps squandered under the auspice of something for latenight cable.

Then there is the ending, no doubt imposed upon Ruiz by producers demanding some solid ground for their audience. It all makes sense eventually, what was real and what not. Again we may disregard this.


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