The Double


(2013) ★★★

Channel 4: PREMIERE Monday 6 September, 12.15am

Shrinking into his baggy suit, timid drone Jesse Eisenberg is disturbed when a confident and popular doppelganger arrives at his place of work. No one else seems to notice that the smirking new man is Eisenberg’s exact double.

Not even Mia Wasikowska, the colleague he worships from a discreet distance: “I attract so many weirdos,” she tells him, unironically. Richard Ayoade follows his growing-pains comedy Submarine with an adaptation of a 19th century Dostoyevsky story that looks more like a cruel Kafka joke.

Set in a dank, cramped, clockwork office block, its backwards-looking brilliance is down to David Crank’s ‘Brazilian’ production design in particular and to all the stardust memories of Woody Allen, Orson Welles and Terry Gilliam in general.

Smart and funny-peculiar, the widest smiles come courtesy of Jon Korkes’ detective, cheerfully investigating the suicides which open and close this odd little picture. Everything about it is strange yet seems deeply familiar. Except those Japanese pop songs.

Certificate: 15

Duration: 89min

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