by Bill Desowitz
February 28, 2013 3:34 PM 0 Comments
With "Stoker," acclaimed Korean director Park Chan-Wook ("Oldboy") riffs on Alfred Hitchcock in his own artsy and oppressive way. It's a chilly reworking of "Shadow of a Doubt" (with nods to "Psycho" and "The Birds" along the way), that eventually takes a turn into Brian De Palma territory. Only here Matthew Goode's mysterious Uncle Charlie creeps up on his passive niece, India (Mia Wasikowska), out of nowhere before they realize how much they're kindred spirits in this bizarre coming of age story that co-stars Nicole Kidman as India's frigid mother.
As production designer Thérèse DePrez ("Black Swan") points out in the exclusive featurette below, "Stoker" is hyper-stylized even beyond what we expect from Chan-Wook. It mostly takes place in an austere yet timeless-looking 1920s mansion. With its diorama concept and icy green shadings, the house is as much a trap as the gothic Bates house.