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Dead Ringers (1988)

7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 23,679 users   Metascore: 86/100
Reviews: 105 user | 77 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

Twin gynecologists take full advantage of the fact that nobody can tell them apart, until their relationship begins to deteriorate over a woman.

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Title: Dead Ringers (1988)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Claire Niveau (as Genevieve Bujold)
...
Cary (as Heidi Von Palleske)
Barbara Gordon ...
Danuta
...
Laura
...
Wolleck / Anders Wolleck
Nick Nichols ...
Leo
Lynne Cormack ...
Arlene
Damir Andrei ...
Birchall
Miriam Newhouse ...
Mrs. Bookman
David Hughes ...
Superintendent
Richard W. Farrell ...
Dean of Medicine (as Richard Farrell)
Warren Davis ...
Anatomy Class Supervisor
Jonathan Haley ...
Beverly, Age 9
Nicholas Haley ...
Elliot, Age 9
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Storyline

The Mantle brothers are both doctors - both gynecologists - and identical twins. Mentally however, one of them is more confident than the other, and always manages to seduce the women he meets. When he's tired of his current partner, she is passed on to the other brother - without her knowing. Everything runs smoothly, until an actress visits their clinic, and the shy brother is the first to fall in love. Will they be able to 'share' her ? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Two bodies. Two minds. One soul. Separation can be a terrifying thing.

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

23 September 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pacto de amor  »

Box Office

Gross:

$9,134,733 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Initially, Jeremy Irons had two separate dressing rooms and two separate wardrobes which he would use depending on which character he was playing at the time. Soon he realized that "the whole point of the story is you should sometimes be confused as to which is which," after which he moved to a single dressing room and mixed the wardrobes together, and found an "internal way" to play each character differently, using the Alexander technique to give them "different energy points," which gave them slightly different appearances. See more »

Goofs

In a scene dated 1954, the twins seen are playing with The Visible Woman, Revell toy company's biological model of a woman that was not marketed until at least five years later. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Elliot, Age 9: You've heard about sex...
Beverly, Age 9: Sure I have.
Elliot, Age 9: Well I've discovered why sex is.
Beverly, Age 9: You have? Fantastic.
Raffaella: It's because humans don't live under water.
Beverly, Age 9: I don't get it.
Elliot, Age 9: Well, fish don't need sex because they just lay the eggs and fertilize them in the water. Humans can't do that because they don't live in the water. They have to - internalize the water. Therefore we have sex.
Beverly, Age 9: So you mean humans would have sex if they lived in the water?
Elliot, Age 9: Well they'd have a kind of sex. The kind where you wouldn't ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Directors: The Films of David Cronenberg (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

In the Still of the Night (I'll Remember)
Performed by The Five Satins
under license from Arista Records, Inc.
Copyrighted by Llee Corp.
Composed by Fred Parris
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Deep meaning and stylish art by Cronenberg.
10 June 2005 | by (the Mad Hatter's tea party.) – See all my reviews

Elliot and Beverly Mantle (Jeremy Irons) are identical twins that are top-of-the-class and incredibly well known gynaecologists. They also treat themselves by swapping their identities around, so they can share each other's work commitments and pleasures, like woman. But all of this comes back to destroy them emotionally and physically.

An intriguing and rather inventive premise director / co-writer David Cronenberg has come up with here. The worlds Cronenberg creates in his film's are rather fascinating in looking at the human body and technology. This film is no exception. So you can't really call this mainstream, as it's not for everyone's tastes. That's why his films seem to have great impact in the realistic visuals and material context. It's flowing with originality, good psychological elements, erotica and it holds such an artistic feel with its stunning visuals and elegance to show.

This thought-provoking drama is rather stimulating and quite downbeat. Though, it's mostly a talkative film; the dialogue is dense on many levels that it's truly captivating. It's more the material context that tries to shock and explore in a subtle way rather than the horrific visuals and shocks that we come to expect from most of Cronenberg's films. It doesn't contain much graphic moments, only about one or two. The sub-plots are drawn up quite well with dabbling in sexual desires and pleasure, technology (instruments and tools of the trade), the twins physical bond, addiction and a rather modernistic world. It's filled with sharp and intense sequences that are entrenched with an effective music score, as it overwhelmingly draws you in. This unsettling aurora builds into paranoia in the last half of the film and it ends rather disturbingly. The stylish production valves are incredibly glossy and professional. With beautifully crafted and slick cinematography. The gloomy colours that fill the screen hold great contrast in the moody and detail backdrop. From their fashionable home to their cold work office.

Jeremy Iron gives a tremendously charismatic performance playing both Elliot and Beverly Mantle. Elliot is Beverly's backbone as he's confident and arrogant. Beverly is the opposite as he's more innocent and rather sweet. Beverly wants to break the bond that they share, but Elliot can't let that happen. At first they weren't that likable, but the further the film goes along we see their downfall and there spiral into madness. That's when you start to feel for them and it gets rather emotionally charged. They also live and depend on each other, feeling what the other one feels and that's mostly pain and gloom here. This happens when they start to depend on painkillers and Beverly believing his girlfriend is cheating on him. This portrait shows how fragile they really are and how we really depend and feel when love ones are in pain and sorrow. As we are effected in the same way too. Genevieve Bujold is splendid as Claire Niveau the movie star and Beverly's love interest.

Maybe the film was a bit overlong, but this is a shockingly grim and efficient film that plays on many levels of the mind.


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