Who’s That Girl?


RELEASED 7 NOVEMBER 1977 | 15 | Blu-ray

Director Robert Wise

Cast Marsha Mason, Anthony Hopkins, John Beck, Susan Swift

A ’70s movie based on a popular novel, which sees a well-to-do American family’s life turned upside down by their daughter’s inexplicab­le behaviour, forcing them to reconsider their views on the spiritual realm… Sound familiar?

Though similariti­es with The Exorcist can’t have hurt the box office, and young Ivy Templeton – who may or may not be a reincarnat­ion of the titular five-year-old, killed in a car crash 11 years ago – has some distressin­g freak-outs, there’s no pea soup here, with the film leaning more towards tug-of-love drama than outright horror. Sinister gargoyles on the family’s brownstone home are as diabolical as it gets.

In between the emotionall­y wrought close-ups, there’s some clever staging by veteran Robert Wise – a sequence which plays out dialogue-free, observed through the window, is especially powerful.

Boasting strong performanc­es from Marsha Mason (impressive­ly convincing as the mother with a scepticism-to-belief character arc) and Anthony Hopkins (who, as Audrey Rose’s father, employs the unblinking gaze later employed as Hannibal Lecter to transmit mesmeric sincerity), it’s a film which takes its premise fairly seriously – until a final-reel hypnotic regression session sees credulity finally snap with a resounding twang.

Extras A talking head by a magician seems fairly pointless (19 minutes). The late author Frank de Felitta (12 minutes) has more to say about The Entity. A rather awkwardly-phrased visual essay (17 minutes) details other reincarnat­ion movies. A “then and now” featurette (four minutes) simply displays the locations in split-screen, without comment.

There’s also a decent talking head on the score (17 minutes), and a Marsha Mason interview (18 minutes). A critical commentary focuses on the film’s themes. Plus: gallery; trailer; booklet. Ian Berriman

Author Frank de Felitta was inspired by hearing his six-year-old son inexplicab­ly playing the piano like Fats Waller.

 ?? ?? “But all I did was put the heating on for 10 minutes!”
“But all I did was put the heating on for 10 minutes!”

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