THE DOUBLE

BY CHRISTOPHER HASKELL
MARCH 3, 2012

“The Double” is an interesting beast of a film. If you saw the trailer before seeing the movie, there’s a good chance you knew most of the plot before even stepping in. Your best bet is to avoid the trailer. That said, for giving away a pivotal plot point before the film even begins, “The Double” still holds together quite well, with most of the credit going to two top-notch performances from Richard Gere and Topher Grace.

Richard Gere plays retired CIA agent Paul, who returns to help finish a case he started before retirement. Under the assumption that a Russian assassin, Cassius, was dead when the identical murders began to resurface, Paul is brought back in by CIA director Tom (Martin Sheen). Paired with the young and intense FBI agent Ben (Topher Grace), who has become obsessed with Cassius, the two men try to track down the assassin and his known Russian cohorts. If you haven’t seen the trailer, then the film could be an excellent, refreshing surprise thriller.

Topher Grace proves that he can match the acting prowess of a veteran like Richard Gere. Grace appears to abandon his typical scrawny loser routine and equals his lead star on almost all levels. I continue looking forward to Grace’s career, which I have happily followed since his days starring on “That 70’s Show.”

Some great moments in “The Double” make the film worthwhile, especially as Richard Gere takes complete hold of his character, delivering stern lines like a blatant confession taken as a joke to a Russian gangster, Bozlovski, in a warehouse when the two finally meet. With impressive showings from the supporting cast in Stephen Moyer (“True Blood”), playing a rough-neck, scar-faced Russian prisoner, and Odette Yustman as Topher Grace’s wife, this film is rounded-out as well.

Though there are much better action films available, it is hard to beat the teaming of Richard Gere and Topher Grace. Able to rise above its crippling advertising, “The Double” is a new cop thriller reminiscent of the Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke pairing in the award-winning “Training Day.” Avoid the trailer for this film, and you will thank me later.

RELEASE DATE
October 28, 2011

DIRECTOR
Michael Brandt

WRITTEN BY
Derek Haas
Michael Brandt

STUDIO
Image Entertainment

PG-13
(for intense sequences of action and violence, some disturbing images and language)

ACTION
CRIME
DRAMA
THRILLER

98 minutes

CINEMATOGRAPHER
Jeffrey L. Kimball

COMPOSER
John Debney

EDITOR
Steve Mirkovich

CAST
Richard Gere
Topher Grace
Stephen Moyer
Odette Yustman
Stana Katic
Chris Marquette
Tamer Hassan
Martin Sheen
Jeffrey Pierce

PRODUCED BY
Ashok Amritraj

BUDGET
$13 million

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