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Enemy (2013)

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A man seeks out his exact look-alike after spotting him in a movie.

Director:

Denis Villeneuve

Writers:

José Saramago (novel), Javier Gullón
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Popularity
999 ( 46)
17 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jake Gyllenhaal ... Adam + Anthony
Mélanie Laurent ... Mary
Sarah Gadon ... Helen
Isabella Rossellini ... Mother
Joshua Peace ... Teacher at School (as Josh Peace)
Tim Post ... Anthony's Concierge
Kedar Brown ... Security Guard
Darryl Dinn ... Video Store Clerk
Misha Highstead Misha Highstead ... Lady in the Dark Room
Megan Mane Megan Mane ... Lady in the Dark Room
Alexis Uiga Alexis Uiga ... Lady in the Dark Room
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Storyline

Adam Bell is a Toronto area History college professor. He is a rather somber man, largely because he is stuck in a routine, which includes a relationship with his live-in girlfriend, Mary. While watching a rental movie, he spots an actor in a bit part that looks like him. He becomes obsessed with finding out about this double of his. He learns that the actor's stage name is Daniel Saint Claire, whose legal name is Anthony Claire. Claire is a Toronto based actor with only a few on-screen credits, and is married to a woman named Helen who is currently several months pregnant. Adam then becomes obsessed with meeting Claire, who he learns upon first sighting that they look exactly the same, from the facial hair to a scar each has, but Claire who outwardly is more "put together" than Adam. Their lives become intertwined as Claire himself ends up becoming obsessed with Adam, but in a slightly different way. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From the Director of Prisoners See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong sexual content, graphic nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site

Country:

Canada | Spain | France

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 February 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

An Enemy See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,161, 14 March 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,007,088, 11 May 2014
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first of two consecutive collaborations between Jake Gyllenhaal and Denis Villeneuve, the other being Prisoners (2013). However, Prisoners (2013) was released before this film. See more »

Goofs

When Anthony calls Adam they agree to meet on a Sunday, one hour drive out of town. When there is the aerial shot of Adam driving to the appointment, shortly there is a billboard in the background displaying the date of "today". It states it's July the 13th of 2012. This date is on a Friday. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mother: [leaving a message] Hello, darling, it's your mother. Thank you for showing me your new apartment. I'm worried about you. I mean, how can you live like that? Anyway, would you call me back? Let's get together again. I love you.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Half in the Bag: Blade Runner 2049 (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

After The Lights Go Out
Performed by The Walker Brothers
Words and music by John Stewart (as John C. Stewart)
Published by Neon Pants Music (BMI)
All Rights Administered by BUG Music Inc., A BMG Chrysalis company
All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.
Courtesy of UMG Recordings, Inc.
under license from Universal Music Canada
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Enemy proves Villeneuve's versatility by telling a mind-boggling mystery with stunning twists and turns.
19 April 2014 | by Andrew MilitoSee all my reviews

With last year's successful thriller Prisoners, Canadian director Denis Villeneuve made a name for himself among American moviegoers. A year later, with the release of Enemy, the impact Villeneuve has left doesn't seem to be anything that will die down any time soon. Reteaming with his Prisoners star Jake Gyllenhaal, Enemy proves Villeneuve's versatility by telling a mind-boggling mystery with stunning twists and turns, deep hidden meanings, and a tremendous double performance by Gyllenhaal.

Adam Bell is a disheveled, run-of-the-mill everyman living in Toronto, Canada, where he works as a college history professor. When he's not teaching at the university, he's sitting around his high-rise apartment in a bored manner or making love with his girlfriend, Mary. Life for Adam is, for a lack of a better word, boring.

Things change when a colleague recommends a movie to Adam. Not a fan of watching movies, Adam very reluctantly agrees to rent the film from a local video store. Initially unimpressed with the movie, Adam notices something odd within the movie: one of the actors, by the name of Anthony St. Claire, looks like him. Identical to him, even. This strange discovery fuels an obsession within Adam. An obsession that faces him with situations he would have never expected.

Adapted from Jose Saramago's The Double, Javier Gullon's screenplay leaves the true meaning behind these events up to the viewer. Although there are very subtle hints to the general idea of the story, there is no clear cut answer to the many twists and turns faced within the film's 90 minute run time. What may be a story of totalitarian beliefs to one viewer, as referenced in Adam's lecture in the beginning of the film, may be a story of marriage in the modern era. It's amazing how screenplays like these can have such a wide range of themes without any of them being wrong.

Despite a talented cast including Melanie Laurent, Sarah Gadon, and Isabella Rossillini, it's Jake Gyllenhaal who steals the show. Gyllenhaal delicately balances the introverted, resentful nature of Adam with the loud, imposing personality of Anthony. It's even more impressive that this performance stands as one of Gyllenhaal's finest in his long list of great roles. Gadon gives a surprisingly great performance, managing to say a lot with just a long glance at Gyllenhaal. Laurent and Rossillini have smaller roles, but are important assets to the story nonetheless.

Enemy has the eerie atmosphere and the thrilling plot that Prisoners had, but that's really their only similarities. Whereas Prisoners was grounded in reality, Enemy is more dream-like, more surreal. This all comes through Villeneuve's delightful directing style, featuring some truly frightening imagery that will strike a nerve with its viewers. However, the hypnotic nature of the film never takes away from its storytelling, which is woefully important for a film that relies this much on its storyline.

Enemy isn't for everybody, but it's target demographic is sure to find the film to be spellbinding and hypnotic. Villeneuve's devious directing is sure to keep the viewer on the edge of their seat the whole time, up until the chilling final frame before the film cuts to the credits. Gyllenhaal holds up the entire film with his bravado double performance, as well as the fantastic supporting cast. With all this together, Enemy has proved to be one of 2014's earliest successes, and it is going to prove to be a tough one to beat.


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