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The Double

Richard Ayoade
Great Britain 2013 / 93’

A loose adaptation of the novel by Fyodor Dostoevsky, reminiscent of the best films by Terry Gilliam and Charlie Kaufman. The main character, Simon James, is constantly taken for granted by his boss and ignored by the girl he loves. He wants to show his talent and externalize his emotions, but because of his pathological shyness, he becomes ever more invisible to those around him. One day, his double appears at work, James Simon, an uncompromising, charismatic, womanizer who gradually begins to displace Simon from his own life. Director Richard Ayoade (Submarine, 11th and 12th editions of New Horizons) uses claustrophobic, cramped corridors and darkened spaces full of retrofuturistic set pieces in order to show the process of Simon withering into helplessness and insanity. Despite an astonishing lightness and humor, Ayoade creates a grotesque world in which the neurotic protagonist is forced into a heroic battle not only for recognition in the eyes of his beloved but also for his own life. It is a battle that he has to fight with himself.  

Adam Horowski

Richard Ayoade

Richard Ayoade was born in 1977 in London. He studied Law at Cambridge, where he was president of the Footlights Club, which is known in the United Kingdom as the final baptism by fire for future comedians (the cream of British comedy have belonged to the club, including several members of Monty Python). Today, he is a respected actor, comedian, television presenter, screenwriter, and director. In 2014, he won a BAFTA for best male performance in a comedy program for his role in The IT Crowd.

Selected filmography

2004 AD/BC: A Rock Opera

2006 Horrificata Illuminata (short)

2006 Darkplace Illuminatum (short)

2008 Arctic Monkeys at the Apollo (doc.)

2010 Moja łódź podwodna / Submarine

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Official site

Cast & Crew

director Richard Ayoade
screenplay Richard Ayoade, Avi Korine
cinematography Erik Wilson
editing Nick Fenton, Chris Dickens
music Andrew Hewitt
cast Jesse Eisenberg, Mia Wasikowska, Wallace Shawn, Noah Taylor, Yasmin Paige, Cathy Moriarty, Phyllis Somerville, James Fox
producer Robin C. Fox, Amina Dasmal
production Alcove Entertainment, Film4, British Film Institute
sales Protagonist
language English
colouration colour