Synopsis: A pair of ex-spies in Duplicity, with a sultry romantic past, team up to pull off the ultimate con job on their employers.
Release Date: March 20, 2009 MPAA Rating: PG-13
Genre(s): Comedy, Drama
The charming smile of Clive Owen (Ray) could not save Duplicity or the star persona of Julia Roberts (Claire). It is quite frankly, a horrible mess. The entire film moves back and forth in time as the character’s plan their con. The problem: you never know where in time you are, how you got there, or what is going on. By the time these questions are explained you have lost interest from being thoroughly confused the moment prior. It is an intriguing plot but the structure completely ruins it for an audience member. It is one thing to keep the audience guessing, it is another to completely leave them in the dark.
If you take each scene separately, Duplicity is very well written. The dialogue is smart and full of quick wit and there is a great twist to the story. The character’s each have a very distinct voice and have been created to carefully complement or have a striking distance to one another. It is the construction of the screenplay as a whole that destroys the story, and the writing it is built upon, for it has little cohesion.
Score and Soundtrack
The actual music in Duplicity is done satisfactorily. The level of the score is disastrous. In many of the scenes the non-diegetic score is playing so loudly you are distracted from the dialogue and plot. Even in the scenes with no dialogue and purely action, it feels overbearing and out of place. It is not complementing the movie but taking away from its key points and normal flow of action. A score should add to a film, not overtake it.
The chemistry between the characters of Ray and Claire is seriously lacking in Duplicity. They spend so much time playing games with each other you never fully trust their feelings for each other are genuine. He comes across as charming and easily fooled while she is cold and distant throughout. The desire to see them together as a couple is never realized. Instead, you wish he would play a con on her for being so incredibly unlikable.
Cast and Crew
- Director(s): Tony Gilroy
- Screenwriter: Tony Gilroy
- Cast: Clive Owen (Ray Koval), Julia Roberts (Claire Stenwick), Tom Wilkinson (Howard Tully), Paul Giamatti (Richard Garsik)
- Country Of Origin: USA