It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
“Final Analysis” is a dedicated example of one of my favorite genres, the overwrought psychological thriller. It's the kind of movie where, if it doesn't end in a fight to the death high up in a lighthouse lashed with lightning, it should. This one does, with the hero hanging by his fingernails high above the cruel rocks below.
Hitchcock would have liked the screenplay, which involves at least two love triangles, maybe three, among a handsome psychiatrist, two sexy but neurotic sisters, and a sadistic husband. He might have also gone for a key plot device, the newly discovered condition named “pathological intoxication,” which causes the sufferer to go berserk after even the teensiest drop of alcohol.
What Hitchcock probably would not have enjoyed, alas, is the complexity of the story. This is one of the most labyrinthine thrillers I've ever seen, with so many twists and turns in the plot and so many double-reverses involving the two sisters that I wish I could see it again and take a lot of notes. Most audiences are likely to emerge dazed and a little goofy, convinced they've seen a humdinger, but unable to quite describe it.
The movie, which begins with the time-honored words, “I had the dream again last night . . .,” stars Richard Gere as a San Francisco psychiatrist whose patient, the beautiful Uma Thurman, still suffers from a traumatic secret in her past. She suggests that the doctor talk to her sister to discover more clues to her condition. When Gere discovers that the sister is Kim Basinger, he is happy to oblige, and of course it turns out there are a lot of lurid secrets from their childhoods - but nothing compared to the lurid secrets they're working on currently.