the fresh films reviews

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Raising Cain (1992)

Directed by:
Brian De Palma

Psychological horror/Thriller

Kains mange ansikter

88 minutes

Produced by:
Gale Anne Hurd

Written by:
Brian De Palma

Cast includes:

Carter / Cain / Dr. Nix / Josh / Margo John Lithgow
Dr. Jenny O'Keefe Nix Lolita Davidovich
Jack Dante Steven Bauer
Dr. Lyn Waldheim Frances Sternhagen
Lieutenant Terri Gregg Henry
Sergeant Sean Cally Tom Bower -
Sarah Mel Harris -
Karen Bowman Teri Austin -
Nan Gabrielle Carteris -



Raising Cain is a fun little excursion in and toying with narrative conventions, but the director Brian De Palma ultimately goes so overboard that his intended satirical edge dies a little. The story itself, about a clinically insane husband and loving father named Carter Nix (John Lithgow) and his seemingly devious plans, is essentially cheesy melodrama stewed together with De Palma's usual psy-thriller sensibilities. Lithgow's extravagant lead performance is the movie's best and most enjoyable asset, regardless of your take on the narrative frenzy we're taken through. Raising Cain may well be the culmination, or the tipping point if you like, of De Palma's careerlong delve into various forms of mental illness and deviating eroticism, almost like the even more twisted sibling of Dressed to Kill. And as usual with his films in this category, the end result never seizes to engage or baffle you, although there was no way he could take this any further after Raising Cain. There is  fun supporting work from Steven Bauer and particularly Frances Sternhagen, who is the star of the best scene in the movie: a 4-minute long take in which we follow Sternhagen's character through the corridors of the police headquarters in typical De Palma-ish fashion.

Copyright 03.11.2023 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang