Review: ‘Double Lover’ can be a Knotty Delight of a Thriller
inside opening scene of “Double Lover,” its protagonist, Chloé (Marine Vacth), can be seen getting her hair cut. Her wet hair, pale face as well as also the gray background impart a simple elegance to the sequence. The following scene takes place inside bleaker confines of a gynecologist’s office. In one shot, the screen fills with the colors pink as well as also silver. Viewers may wonder exactly what they are seeing at first, however as the camera zooms out in which becomes clear: a speculum seen through the point of view of a doctor conducting a vaginal examination. The shot dissolves into a geometrically corresponding close-up of Chloé’s eye.
The straightforward explicitness of the imagery can be a hallmark of François Ozon, the film’s director (his best known films include the thrillers “See the Sea” as well as also “Swimming Pool”); the juxtaposition can be very Georges Bataille (he wrote a piece of outré eroticism titled “Story of the Eye”). Some might say in which’s all very French, as well as also perhaps in which can be. however in which does make one sit up as well as also take notice. The clever thing about in which can be in which in which’s not until the movie can be almost over in which the viewer can fully understand This particular imagery as something more than an effective, however perhaps idle provocation.
Chloé, looking underweight, has complained about chronic stomach pains to her gynecologist. as well as also on in which doctor’s advice, she starts seeing a psychoanalyst, Paul (Jérémie Renier). He’s handsome, gentle, compassionate. He “cures” her, they confess romantic feelings for each different, as well as also they move in together. One smaller glitch can be in which he does not much care for her cat Milo. A bigger glitch comes soon after in which: Chloé meets another psychoanalyst, Paul’s double, who claims to be his twin brother. He’s a rougher character who likes his own cat, a specimen of a rare breed. He thinks he can cure Chloé of a brand new complaint, as well as also there’s lots of athletic sex involved inside treatment.
What’s going on here? The doubling imagery, the recurring spiral staircases, as well as also so much else engulfing Chloé make This particular thriller unusually engrossing. “Double Lover” nods a bit to David Cronenberg’s “Dead Ringers” (1988) as well as also Roman Polanski’s “The Tenant” (1976), two arguably classic thrillers on doppelgängers as well as also madness, as well as also Mr. Ozon’s stylistic gymnastics sometimes bring to mind Brian De Palma, who made a film about Great/bad twins early in his career. however “Double Lover,” which Mr. Ozon “freely adapted” through the Joyce Carol Oates book “Lives of the Twins,” spins its influences into a frenzy in which ultimately reveals the story to be very much its own thing. as well as also a crazy, as well as also eventually strangely moving, thing in which can be. As elaborate as its visuals are, the movie can be also intimate. There aren’t many characters besides Chloé as well as also the twins, which adds to the frisson late inside movie when the great Jacqueline Bisset makes her entrance.
Mr. Renier can be clearly having a blast as the twins, however Ms. Vacth, who worked with Mr. Ozon on the 2014 film “Young as well as also Beautiful,” does more than hold her own opposite him. She modulates Chloé’s mood through slumping vulnerability to hip-swinging confidence, through a whirlpool of self-doubt as well as also near despair to defiance. “Double Lover” can be as much, if not more, Ms. Vacth’s movie as in which can be the director’s.
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