Struggling, intensely claustrophobic actor Jake Scully (Craig Wasson) spends his spare time spying on an always-undressing beautiful woman while house-sitting at his friend's swanky Los Angeles bachelor pad. Then he notices a big ugly guy with a power drill is also spying on her, and Scully begins trailing them in a bizarre game that eventually leads to murder. To solve the mystery, Scully infiltrates the porn industry and stars in an X-rated video for 1980s band Frankie Goes to Hollywood, eventually linking up with adult film star Holly Body (Melanie Griffith), the key to all the strange goings-on. Director Brian De Palma delves merrily into his bag of cinematic tricks for this mystery, which comes off as a sort of sex- and sleaze-filled hybrid of Hitchcock's VERTIGO and REAR WINDOW. Griffith, then known mainly as the daughter of Hitchcock leading lady Tippi Hedren, earned fans and critical buzz with her refreshingly funny, sexy performance as the porn star. A pre-NYPD BLUE Dennis Franz appears as a director. Evocative use of L.A. locations and De Palma's creative camerawork help mask the less believable plot elements, as does a nice score by Pino Dinoggio.
While house-sitting, an unemployed actor becomes a Peeping Tom on a stripteasing neighbor. When he witnesses a murder one night, his curiosity leads him into the sordid world of higfh-class pornography for an answer to the mystery.
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