I can't exist by myself because I'm afraid of myself, because I'm the maker of my own evil.
Possession is a very difficult movie to get through - disturbing, bizarre and all in all hard to watch. It shows the destruction of marriage using many creepy plot devices, strange metaphors and often borders on horror movie, with all the examples of body horror that happen here. But it's all worth it because of Isabelle Adjani's performance in the film. I have yet to see The Story of Adele H. which features what is frequently called one of the best portrayals of madness in movies and it's also provided by Adjani, but for me, her work in Possession is absolutely hypnotizing.
Adjani plays two different women - self destructive Anna who wants out of her marriage and sweet and kind Helen. Adjani's work is at best when she is Anna, unpredictable, insane and completely lost. Her blue dress, manic eyes and her shame, anger and frenzy make her into a character you can't stop thinking about. Anna is shown mutilating herself many times in the movie, resenting her husband and falling deeper and deeper into her madness.
Ultimately her hidden desires and obsessions create an actualmonster (creature fabricated by E.T.’s designer, Carlo Rambaldi) that makes her to terrible things, that she wants to keep alive and that ultimately brings her even farther from her husband. She is also shown to be having breakdowns of different nature - both religious and sexual.
The most intense moment of the movie is when Anna is having some sort of seizure/tantrum in an underground passage which ends with her miscarriage - or what can be interpreted as the birth of the monster that we see in the movie. Sounds crazy? It really is. Adjani's work in that scene is downright shocking. She told a French magazine that it took her several years to get over playing Anna. She also said that she'd never take on a similar role.
This performance won Adjani the best actress prize at Cannes, although the director recalls that upon her initial viewing of the film she retreated to the nearest bathroom to feign cutting her wrists. Possession is definetly not a film for everyone, but it's like a combination of David Lynch and David Cronenberg's styles and Adjani's work is really something amazing to see.