June 30, 2021

Midweek Mention... Raising Cain

Midweek Mention... Raising Cain

Peter Andre had fond memories of the 1992 Brian De Palma movie RAISING CAIN and with none of the other dads having seen it, the midweek mention was the perfect place to settle down and discuss this feverishly ludicrous psychological thriller. John Lithgow is Dr Carter Nix, acclaimed child psychologist and sufferer of multiple personality disorder whose discovery of his wife's infidelity may be enough to cause him a total breakdown. The bonkers script and incredible mega-acting of Lithgow lift what would otherwise be a fairly sub-par melodrama to classic status as it successfully deconstructs and comments on the psycho sexual thriller genre whilst simultaneously adding to it. Clever stuff, though not all the Bad Dads agree.


Raising Cain


Sidey: Pete You pick this film in a top five I think which inspired its inclusion for six mid weaker

Pete: Yeah So I had watched this years ago and I remember Well the film stayed with me I sort of it was different to a lot of things that I'd seen and I thought it would be worth revisiting to see if it was good or not And also because of the the Euro theme that we had been

it had some references to Kane

Dan: Oh I was about to say with clutching at straws a little bit there that the cane was that And what what was the top five that came up Can you remind me

Pete: It was a yeah the long takes which I'm sure if you were watch the film you saw

Reegs: there is a fantastic but areas of brilliant you're right It is a brilliant scene in this

Pete: So yeah that was the film So it was a Brian DePalma film I wouldn't have known that at the time that I was watching it originally featuring John Lithgo who's an actor that I love

Sidey: I see him primarily as a comedic actor I don't know why maybe from third rock from the

Pete: third rock from the sun I I I sort of enjoyed a little bit Yeah

Sidey: So it was quite weird to see him in this

Reegs: where he went through a phase of being In reasonably high profile I mean obviously he was the bad guy and cliff hanger and a few others that he's paid but yeah

Sidey: this is their third collaboration department And Lithco

Reegs: So what other films is Lythgoe in is he it's not interest to kill is he which the film that this

Sidey: no he was in obsession and blow out the name of your sex tape

I it struck me straight away this film as being completely nice to their fucking horse shit because

Reegs: well

Sidey: get onto what happened with the maker of it later But the very first scene when he He has split personalities effectively He's lost his marbles and he sees this this other version of himself in a really shit leather jacket and glasses and like what the fuck

Pete: So so that I think so that there are elements of this film that have dated really badly And I

Sidey: from the start through to the end

Pete: So I think that certainly because this was what 92 and I think maybe at that time you could have still gotten away with a like a cliche portrayal of a of a wrong And so a guy who's going to roll the sleeves up on his jacket and have shades on and be smoking And then

Reegs: know he's a bad

Pete: know as the audience this is a bad guy So I think at the time that probably wouldn't have been an issue for people but that cliche is is very much dated

Reegs: Well I don't know I've got an opinion on that Maybe we'll come to all of that at the end of the when we talk about what we thought about it

Pete: because

Dan: to take your point it had that double denim field Didn't it It's just a little

Pete: bit which you're rocking

Dan: I'm doing something similar but it was It it didn't have that graininess of of Mo Mo of old films It had that

Reegs: Well it had a sort of soap opera aesthetic to it That's what I found

Sidey: sort of shy

Reegs: Yeah But I'm pretty sure that was absolutely on purpose

Pete: So I've I've served since cause I did because obviously it was my nomination This is I did a little bit of background and and there was elements of it trying to sort of like Psychological thrillers at the same time as being a psychological thriller but I mean generally if we just without walking through the entire plot this is

Reegs: oh no we've got to go through their plot because it's

Pete: brilliant is very involved

Dan: interest in you Yeah The plot has twists and turns but the other films in and around this time that you say this might have Parody of what are they can you

Reegs: a lot of them are Brian department's own films So he had a reputation for staging these Hitchcockian Type thrillers that have always got a sort of weird sexual element to them sort of new RH elements as well All of it being played up to about a million in this but I have to say it took me about 35 minutes to get in on the joke I really didn't realize so

Pete: I had not seen this before

Reegs: I thought But I didn't recall any of it So by the time you're 15 minutes in and Dr Carter nix who's Lithgo the respected child psychologist has had a conversation with another parent about taking his son off and and having experimented on And then he blows some poison in her face

Sidey: I thought it was just chloroform something

Reegs: Well he was like he blew like a

Sidey: Oh he did it He did do that

Pete: Yeah yeah

Reegs: that I wasn't expecting Then multiple personality guy turned up and I was like oh okay And side he had already texted me saying this film is fucking shit And and and and then I at first didn't realize that I was supposed to be finding this all ludicrous because there is absolutely no way when you talk through what happens in this movie that you could take any of it seriously Surely not even DePalma

Pete: No no no Cause it's not it isn't it this isn't like one of those films that's like based on a true story or anything It's

Dan: we've read a book once about our I can't remember the title of it Exactly It was the 12 No the 12 people or 12 personalities or Billy fish or someone I

Reegs: Yes I've read that It's one actually Was that a play as

Dan: it might've have been a it was it was a huge case at the time because they started to uncover all these increasingly complex people in this one guy who had suffered multiple kinds of traumas as as a young person And I thought this where this might go actually but yeah Obviously as we go through

Pete: it's kind of it's like a a sort of a hammed up dramatization of what might happen if in like Hollywood world if a character has multiple personality disorder And so the and so you you said it John Smith goes is Carter next Dr Carter next who himself who was a child psychologist but he himself has multiple personality disorder because as we find out in the film he was subjected to psychological and perhaps physical as well abuse by his his own father who never got his like Christian name But Dr Nick senior I think also played by John

Reegs: the second time around because you do see him earlier in the movie He's not played by John Lithgo So it is a bit yeah A throw right You don't necessarily

Dan: the makeup was heavy or it was the same guy I think Was it

Pete: Let's go all the way

Reegs: Was it So the scene in the motel at the beginning

Pete: no that's totally let's go Yeah Yeah It's all all John let's go Yeah

Reegs: What a performance

Pete: Well

Dan: Carter Nick

Pete: well we so yeah And Carter next has been sort of abducting children for on you know under the premise of delivering children to his father who at this point in time has faked his own death but is now running like some kind of like like COVID Child Yeah In Norway In

Reegs: In

Dan: Stay with us here

Pete: Yeah Yeah

Reegs: Meanwhile Carter's wife Jenny She's having an affair with the impossibly Good looking Stephen Bauer as Jack Dante Yeah

Pete: also a Brian de Palma collaborator he's in Scarface He's Manny and Scarface Yeah

Sidey: she buy him a Tiffany watch or

Reegs: she

Sidey: just on the off chance

Reegs: a really shit clock and she buys one for Carter as well And then in a dream sequence that sort of a dream within a dream within a dream it's gone inception she doesn't know whether she's put the right clock in the right person's room She hilariously met Jack Dante when Right Let me get this right His wife was dying

Pete: She's like an oncologist or

Reegs: an oncologist She was there She was treating the patient and his wife they fell in love and there's this hilarious moment where they have their first kiss and the wife sort of comes out of a coma at the same time He sees it and then just dies

Dan: thought that was it It was the the law the last look of I mean it was the last look of her life was seeing her husband kissy

Reegs: oncologist

Pete: No

Dan: trying to save

Pete: but no fucks were given by by Jenny or Jack is it

Dan: it was classic B movie acting and a scene that actually I mean it was so proper stuff You you did expect it to

Pete: it was really it's really camp this film Isn't it it's like in in that in that respect I mean some something so you you see early on that basically when Carter Carter sort of knows what what he's doing to a point but then anytime he has to do something that's going to be like dark or difficult or whatever Then that's when Kane takes over his life Personalities like the Eva I think at the beginning your mentors sort of thing that it's like an evil twin because he says because he says to him oh well when did you get out Yeah Like obviously your minor thing Oh this is like an identical twin Who's evil who has got out of prison When in fact it must been when did you get out of my mind Yeah

Reegs: Yeah There's also other characters that appear my favorite I think is Josh Who's traumatized little boy cause all of the other characters are John left go This is just a little boy where Horrendously bad old man wig like gray haired wig and old man clothes And he speaks with John Lithgow CO's voice but he's just a traumatized little boy It's really sad actually And then there's another one which is Margot who

Pete: She's like a matriarchs that character I think she's she's obviously psychotic as well but sh her job is to look hard like make sure that the children don't come to any harm bizarrely which they they've all been harmed a lot psychologically

Reegs: Carter has been a Pratt and around and setting up Jack Jenny's old flame

Pete: cut Carter or

Reegs: setting him up

Pete: sees Jenny and Jack having a fuck in the woods and uses that as an opportunity See

Reegs: it's an amazing

Pete: and then starts framing

Dan: then is the classic trauma that he can't deal with And so another personality who is stronger and more able to take over then this is your call Leather jacket guy comes in then isn't it He decides that he he actually finds it all quite funny Doesn't he

Reegs: Oh it's hilarious Yeah So did I

Dan: is is that Caught his wife is having an affair because he doesn't see it That it's his wife He he's a different personality altogether He just happens to share the same body It's

Reegs: funny bit where Carter goes home but he's actually Cain inhabiting the car to body and he goes into the house and he starts feeling up his wife and then the baby or it's not even a baby The kid's about fucking 17 but it's making a noise on the monitor And he's like oh don't worry I'll go and sort that out And then he just gets in his car and drives off

Pete: Cause he's got like a body in the car where he's got it's not even a body It's that it's the woman that he's Clara formed in in like in the beginning is still in the boot of the car and he's got to go and like see to her

Reegs: Yeah Yeah

Sidey: Is this the film where they pull back the sheet in the morgue and the woman's face

Reegs: that's right at the end of the of the fantastic sequence but even this right I've watched this scene a couple of times cause it's great it's typical department affair where they're taking what is could be a fairly like a huge bit of exposition dump on the audience And then but doing it like with lots of camera movement and it's going down stairwells and uninterrupted and sort of impossible things But then as it's carefully choreographed along she occasionally starts to wander out of shot and

Pete: well that

Reegs: back in

Pete: That was what I referenced in that top five is the It's that is well acted like this this I think Dr Lynn Waldheim she worked with Dr Nick Sr on producing his book about multiple personality disorder a new this

Dan: Hello everyone I'm doctor

Pete: yeah yeah He knew about this Kane character Didn't realize it was Dr Nick's his own son

Reegs: also really clumsily in she's wearing a wig It's like oh like it's in the middle of conversation It's like oh by the way I'm wearing a wig

Sidey: just

Pete: Yeah Yeah And then a wink at the camera You'll need to remember that in a later sequence So yeah so that's how she gets introduced and yeah the the the

Reegs: then you do get that scene that you're talking about with with the reveal of the body

Sidey: It's brilliant That was the only good bit of the film

Dan: Yeah you didn't seem to love this

Sidey: No I thought it was fucking awful Zero out of 10 I was fucking a Bismal The only thing it's got going for it is that we've recently seen slamming salmon and cats This is fucking appalling I don't believe that it's camp and meant to be you know sending up I just think it's shit

Pete: I think if you take this for I don't think this film is made to be they can seriously is a serious piece of work I think if you

Sidey: well that's actually I'm

Pete: surprised that you hated it If you thought that this was a film trying to be deadly serious it's not don't think you'd cast John Lithgow In a film like this and

Sidey: the post is not like that It looks like it's supposed to be

Dan: no this is serious Scary This is trying to be scary This isn't yeah it

Sidey: well I guess the success the success of the film then depends on whether you take it as a straight laced psychological thriller or a parody of that genre because I didn't and I just thought it was shy and it made me Question whether the department's ever actually made a good film I had to go back through his filmography because this this came after everything That's good And I'm thinking fuck it's just utter shit Maybe I maybe I got it wrong But to me I fucking hated watching it I fell asleep for about 10 minutes but I didn't go back Cause it was fucking painful

Reegs: thought it was so entertaining

Pete: Well one thing I did cause I need to I'm making up my own kind of like lists So we've now got slamming salmon is

Sidey: worse

Pete: film you've ever seen Cats is second I just want to know Cause cloud Atlas is going to be getting your top 10 best films soon

Sidey: I was kind about cloud Atlas

Pete: You were what

Sidey: I was kind about cloud Atlas

Pete: Okay So where is that now Is this raising cane Is

Sidey: I dunno I dunno when it's fresh it's fresh So it's right up there Cause I thought it was a stinker What I said about cloud Atlas No it's not What I said about cactus was I'm glad that they took a chance on it It just didn't work for me

Pete: You said it was the worst thing you'd ever seen

Sidey: Okay Well it's not anymore

Reegs: Yeah Well there's been a lot a lot's happened

Pete: every week where I'm improving cloud Atlas is I'm pleased with that I mean it yeah

Reegs: I don't think it's meant to be like naked gun style comedy though

Pete: no no no It's not It's meant to have

Reegs: entertaining

Pete: it is kind of yeah I think reading a bit about it afterwards There were definitely yeah Nods towards this not being a totally like to be taken totally seriously filmed There are elements of it There are bits where they try and do I thought

Reegs: honestly you

Pete: say like the scene the scene where it's so Jenny gets the wife gets kind of like smothered and put in the car and then the car pushed into the river and you see her kind of like come to in the car and then she's screaming in the car Submerges so you assume she's dead when there's the reveal that she comes back and she's on the baby

Reegs: she was dead

Sidey: that

Pete: That part there like again that's data because we've seen that sort of thing a million times since but that was quite like sinister as soon as you see it because obviously our hair's wet she's I particularly like she's been in freezing cold water She PR pretty kind of like the color drain from that was quite a sort of a not a jar you know a jarring moment So there's there's bits that are not just purely meant to be comedy They're meant to be kind of like thriller elements to it

Reegs: Honestly by the time John Lithgo has escaped from the police station donned a wig and it's blatant like it's amazing Like he's about six foot three any and But yeah he's big He's a big guy And the amazing thing is is that all of the trouble that the camera goes to to obscure his face And it's so obviously him it's just a massive guy wearing

Pete: She's followed this like Dr Waldheim has now grown a foot taller and yeah And as not and his bare foot in a massive trench coat

Reegs: She's in the lift with them

Pete: she still thinks it's Dr Waldheim Her husband So that's kind of ridiculous The whole sort of final scene of like of Margo I think is now the the the the main personality stabbing the father to save the child the child falling off the balcony

Reegs: the sundial And they've been talking about the Sundale the whole way through there's loads

Pete: the omen like

Reegs: just Hitchcock classic Hitchcock to set something up like that But then Lithco senior Nick senior shoots the sundial doesn't he as he gets

Pete: he gets stabbed

Reegs: he doesn't end up getting impaled I mean it's just ridic

Pete: the child when I say it's the final seat it's not the final scene because then it moves on to the the scene in the kid's playground If if you've just been through that as a family Jenny is there talking to her friends like having a chat

Dan: the kid wander off is

Pete: lets the kid wander off knowing yeah Her like maniac multiple personality disorder Husband is still at large She just lets the kid wander off I mean like yeah I know it was good gossip like that they were talking about at the time Lets the kid wander off and obviously the kids there you think something's coming the action I loved that final like absolute final like shot of her bending down

Dan: final

Reegs: to reveal Don't let go in a wig

Pete: Yeah I love that man I was like yes that's

Sidey: fine

Pete: clerk

Reegs: like clapping and laughing at this like a fucking idiot because it was this movie just kept going and being more insane and more absurd but it was It wasn't totally just saying this is all ridiculous Like like you like you were saying P it's you know there are elements in there that are supposed to be thrilling to you and stuff but

Dan: not saying that there wasn't meant or or on purpose comedic moments in there But I don't think they were pointing at laughing A lot of the bits that you were laughing at you too I think they actually meant some of this stuff

Reegs: How could they

Dan: go back This is the eighties

Pete: or

Dan: or

Pete: Yeah

Dan: I mean that's right next to the

Pete: There were definitely if you read it And Brian DePalma and other people who were involved in it they were definitely nods towards this being it was meant to be a thriller but it was also men and parody some thrillers as well like take it to like hammer up quite a

Dan: bit Call me wazoo there that he doesn't really know what's what he's doing

Sidey: the opening scene was supposed to be half way through So in 2012 Pete Gelda Blom a devoted fan of devoted fan of Brian department Did a fan recap the film after he heard about departments' regret of changing the order of the film

Reegs: yes because originally all the crazy stuff with like the multiple personalities didn't

Sidey: come in

Reegs: about half an

Sidey: which I think I think would have been better so he got a copy a copy of the original screenplay reordered the scenes and reedited it and then put it out in the internet and indie wire and Brian DePalma himself was very pleased with the results when it was going for a blue rate rerelease DePalma was able to convince the producers to hold off the initial disease and include that on the Blu-ray So the official director's cut of the film is actually something that some fan made at home on his computer which is pretty cool

Pete: So my understanding was that the first half of the film was meant to be everything from Jenny's perspective the wife So without the

Reegs: different

Pete: different Jenny Yeah I've tried to forget that film as I'm sure you have Yeah it was meant to be from Jenny's perspective So a lot of it would have asked a lot of questions and not really delivered many answers And the whole reveal about Carter having multiple personality disorder Wouldn't come into the film until halfway through

Sidey: I think I would have preferred that money money-wise budget for this was 12 million Doritos Do you think it made

Pete: sense Sure I saw this and I think maybe it got its money back in a bit more or something

Reegs: He just he made bonfire of the vanities didn't he And and that absolutely bombed horribly And this was not long afterwards because that played into it He was still scarred by what happened on bonfire of the vanities And that's why he was he edited it So weirdly you know in a complete different way than he had originally intended to

Sidey: So do you think it made money or not

Reegs: Yeah

Dan: I think we're John lift goes name and Brian the Palmer it's got over the line

Sidey: Jonathan got a big star I just don't see it anyway it did make some money It's not that one That's different film it made $37 million

Dan: makes John let's go a big star to be

Reegs: love to see more of these

Sidey: so yeah what a piece of shit

Pete: I I enjoyed this but in a totally different way to I think when I first watched it it might be I I the the the sort of like the camp and everything like elements of it would have been lost on me And I would have watched it and genuinely been like thrown by the thriller sort of moments and the the the idea and the concept of it I'd have probably been early twenties I enjoyed it again this time but for totally different reasons

Reegs: Yeah I I really I thought this was really entertaining It was funny And I think it was I was laughing at the bits that I would think I was supposed to be laughing at And also it is a thing you know Brian DePalma had a lot Stuff thrown at him about his movies having those weird sexual things in them and have and being this kind of wanting to ape Hitchcock all the time And this movie does it's taking all that stuff and ramping it up to like a thousand billion because it's like psycho but on LSD it's it's just really entertaining this film I loved it Watch it

Dan: Nah I didn't really like it I thought it was all right I must say one of my personalities must've liked it but no for the most part I thought this was a bit of a struggle to be honest just because it was dated I liked the idea I liked the idea of that The multiple personalities I like John Lithgo and there was some some scenes the bit of the end was almost safety entire film just because it's absolutely ridiculous to see that that last shot but you have to do a fair bit to get that kind of

Pete: It performance in this was like sort of pretty universally No no it was critically

Reegs: know they loved it but it's stressful because everyone is just like oh here's John Lithgo as well Here's why you don't believe they're separate I know they're not they don't feel like separate identities It's just John Lithgo

Sidey: It's a stinker