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Brian DePalma
USA, 1978

With the arrival of Brian DePalma’s nutty anti-thriller Passion in 2013, I took the time to revisit some of the director’s work that I hadn’t seen in years. Mission to Mars and Snake Eyes both surprised me as being far more ambitious and dangerous than I had remembered. Still, nothing prepared me for an initial viewing of DePalma’s 1978 film, The Fury. That this loony conspiracy film about telekinesis, secret government agencies, and Kirk Douglas’s massive chest even exists is mind-boggling. While the film is often a breakneck and dynamic chase film, it was a quiet long shot of a single van parked atop the roof of an open-aired garage that sent shivers down my spine. For a film about isolation, loneliness, and alienation, this single composition, somewhat cramped and contorted by the telephoto lens, is as striking a statement on America in the 1970s as anything in The Parallax View or The Conversation.