The Intruder (1999)

Rating: E

Dir: David Bailey
Star: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Charles Powell, Nastassja Kinski, John Hannah

First things first: yes, it is the David Bailey, moving from still pictures to moving ones, which may help explain why this looks elegant enough, it just doesn’t say much. Gainsbourg plays a woman who moves in with her husband, only to find their apartment plagued by creepy incidents, which suggest his previous wife is still around. Except, she was murdered two years ago by an unknown assailant. What is going on? A fair question, and one the viewer will certainly find themselves asking, albeit more directed at the actors and their agents.

Hannah is wildly out of his depth as a theoretical physicist, spouting off about the Montauk Project (an alleged modern attempt to replicate the Philadelphia Experiment), and Kinski vanishes for no reason in the last third, after teasing us with a lesbian subtext for much of the film. There is no real explanation, just a lot of hand-waving, and even that’s not done with enough energy or enthusiasm to pass muster. Gainsbourg is just about credible, there’s a nice, almost theatrical setting which helps disguise the low budget ($4.5m), and Chris will no doubt remind me about the trans-temporal cat-fight. That’s about all there is; don’t give up the day-job, David…