A clerk in a government agency finds his unenviable life takes a turn for the horrific with the arrival of a new co-worker who is both his exact physical double and his opposite - confident, charismatic and seductive with women.
Simon is a timid man, scratching out an isolated existence in an indifferent world. He is overlooked at work, scorned by his mother, and ignored by the woman of his dreams. He feels powerless to change any of these things. The arrival of a new co-worker, James, serves to upset the balance. James is both Simons exact physical double and his opposite - confident, charismatic and good with women. To Simons horror, James slowly starts taking over his life.Written by
aka "Ameno Akasaka"
Written by Jun Hashimoto, Tsunaki Mihara
Published by Watanabe Music Publishing Co. Ltd (c) 1968
Administered by Fairwood Music (UK) Ltd for the UK & Eire
Performed by The Blue Comets
Licensed courtesy Watanabe Music Publishing Co. Ltd
Administered by Fairwood Music (UK) Ltd for the UK & Eire See more »
A jumble of movies we've seen before
Before you get all pissy and shout at your computer screen that this movie is based on a Dostoevsky novella from the 1800s, let me be clear: I am not inferring that the story somehow ripped off other contemporary sources. I'm just saying that I felt distracted while viewing The Double by its many similarities to films I've seen and that have seeped into popular culture. Specifically, I kept thinking of Fight Club, The Tenant, Youth In Revolt, Enemy, Rear Window, Brazil, Eraserhead, Dead Ringers, and The Trial. Which leads me to the question: Do we need this movie? Even if it is a mostly faithful adaptation to a hitherto unadapted story by a world famous 19th century novelist, which recalls excellent films from the history of cinema, and which was beautifully, skilfully crafted and acted...do we really need another surreal-noir about the anonymity of corporate jobs? Or another movie with the doppelganger/alter ego paradigm, especially one which does nothing to reinvent or subvert the genre? It should be noted that I enjoyed watching this film for its set design and b/c of Wasikowska's enchanting ways. But not for its story. Which isn't to say I think the source material is weak, but that the elements which had been so intriguing when the novella was first published have now become tropes of this type of film. In short, The Double left me thinking of the films it resembled, already forgetting the doppelganger (could this have been the point?).
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