SAM LEVINSON'S 'EUPHORIA' DEFINITELY KEEPS DE PALMA VIBES IN ITS FEVERISH MIX
Tonight is the season two finale of HBO's Euphoria. Each episode this season has been directed by Sam Levinson, who has also written or co-written the entire series so far (and also directed most of season one, as well). Last week's episode (episode 7) ended with the image above as its final shot, before a "To Be Continued..." was added to the right of the shocked face of Cassie, her eyes wide, looking into the school theater as she breathes, audibly, onto the window of the door in front of her. A Sissy Spacek-as-Carrie vibe is unmistakable, as viewers have just seen Cassie subjected to what she surely feels is the most shocking rejection she could possibly experience at the moment, and she turns her attention to the person she holds responsible.
A poster for Brian De Palma's Carrie appeared way back in episode two of season one, on the apartment wall of a character named Tyler, who gets an unexpected (and unwelcomed) visit from Nate:
That same episode featured a poster from another De Palma film, Scarface, on the wall of the drug dealer Fezco:
Episode four of season one found Levinson staging a carnival in which all of the series' main characters attend in one form or another, with a bit of a Bates High/prom-like tension to the various proceedings. That same episode ends with Rue and Jules on a bed that rotates into flashes of their relationship, set to a Pino Donaggio cue from Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now, "Laura's Theme". IndieWire's Steve Greene mentioned it in an article from 2020 about the music in Euphoria, for which he talked with Labrinth, who composes music for each episode, and music supervisor Jen Malone:
Finding that synergistic energy between music and picture doesn’t happen by accident. The shifting nature of TV refinement meant that it was never one clear-cut task after another. Labrinth said work on the carnival sequence came while he was juggling 20 other cues. Clearing part of Pino Donaggio’s score from “Don’t Look Now” for the show’s breathtaking rotating bed scene meant that Malone had to make calls to Italy in the middle of the night on a 48-hour deadline.
Meanwhile, that Scarface poster has continued to show up throughout season two: