Judith appears to be involved in a gender bender here. Not that her story can’t be reinterpreted.
And what a dramatic switch. The placement of the knife behind the back – seen by the viewer but not the victim – is menacing. The red drape and the red garment foreshadow the violence to come. The placement of Judith in the foreground gives the character more power than the retiring figure of Holofernes in the background.
How convenient that he is laying on his stomach with his neck so nicely exposed.