Jake Gyllenhaal delivers two great performances in this compelling and creepy doppelgänger tale about a dishevelled university professor who spots his exact double performing in a movie, and tracks him down.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2014
Jake Gyllenhaal meets Jake Gyllenhaal in this hypnotically baffling doppelgänger tale from the director of Incendies. Adam (Jake 1) is a Toronto history professor, a bit frayed around the edges and apt to drift in and out of focus, whether with his students or his girlfriend (Mélanie Laurent). One night Adam dreams that he saw himself in a DVD he watched earlier in the evening. He takes another look, and sure enough, there he is in a tiny part, identified in the credits as Anthony (Jake 2). We follow as Adam stalks and eventually confronts the actor, not so much a lookalike, it turns out, but an exact replicant, one who’s differently abled. Sleek, vital and with a heavily pregnant wife (Sarah Gadon), Anthony might be Adam’s opposite. Mutual comparison, in which the women become unwitting adjudicators, soon thickens into mutual intolerance and dread. The mind games that ensue are played out in an eerily stylised near-future city where the very air seems piped in from another planet. Villeneuve’s creepy psychic fable is based on the novel The Double by the great, wily Portuguese fantasist José Saramago.
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