Film: Snake Eyes

"This is fight night and I am the king."

Snake Eyes isn’t amongst De Palma’s best. It’s a ropey tale of a plot to murder the secretary of state at a big boxing match in Atlantic City. Cage plays a corrupt cop who finds out one of his best buddies in the navy (Gary Sinise) is heavily implicated in the murder.

It’s hard to see the point of any of it since De Palma only gives it twenty minutes or so before he reveals the killer. I read somewhere that he claims this is because it’s the story of a relationship between friends being tested. Well if that’s the case, why do we not see this either? Cage is in denial for about two minutes before he turns completely against his friend. We don’t see his conflict of interests for long enough to make it believable. This could have been a conspiracy thriller, or a clever cat and mouse chase, or even a whodunnit, but instead it was a bit of everything and a whole load of nothing.

All the performances are stellar, I kind of like Cage in this role and Gugino is good as the researcher who finds out the truth (although she isn’t on camera nearly enough. She gets literally locked away for about 40 minutes); sadly there’s noting they can do to hold our interest.

Brian De Palma | 1998 | IMDB | Wikipedia