Thursday, April 30, 2009

DUPLICITY (2009)


Written & Directed By Tony Gilroy



Where & When: Fairfax Cinemas Los Angeles, CA. April 28, 2009 4:00PM



I just got around to "Duplicity" even though I was initially really looking forward to seeing the film. I hadn't heard or read anything positive about it, which made it less of a priority and after seeing it... I could have waited a little longer. Don't get me wrong... I actually kinda liked it but "Duplicity" certainly is not a great film. Julia Roberts and Clive Owen star in this convoluted, spy versus spy, romantic, dramatic, thriller where you are constantly trying to keep track of what's going on and who's doing what to who and at the end... not really caring.

Our story begins by introducing us to Howard Tully and Richard Garsik played by Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti who are rival business men who typically want to destroy the other so that they can rule the world. Mr. Garsik has hired Claire (Ms Roberts) to be a mole in Mr. Tully's company. Her job is to find out what their secret project is, steal it and bring it to Mr. Garsik where he can use it to make millions of more dollars. You can NEVER have too much money.

Claire arranges to have Ray (Mr. Owen) also work for Mr. Garsik who happens to be her lover/former target/business partner. They had met years ago when she stole some secret papers from him after she slept with and drugged him. Now they are working together to find out what the secret project is, steal it from Mr. Tully and then steal it from Mr. Garsik and sell it themselves and make millions of dollars. But they don't exactly trust each other which makes their plan slightly complicated in carrying out.

Oh. And the film jumps back and forth in time and locations. Got all of that? Perhaps it not that complicated and it could just be me. "Michael Clayton" shared a similar style as well as writer and I really liked that film. Ending on a positive note, Tony Gilroy assembled a superb cast which included some of my favorite actors like Tom Wilkinson as well as great actors better known on the stage like Denis O'Hare and Kathleen Chalfant.

Julia Roberts is back in spectacular form using all her gifts which helped make her a superstar but now with a maturity that is very becoming on her. Clive Owen, another fav, is an unconventionally handsome and charming man whose dark edges makes him very appealing and together with Ms Roberts elevate this film to slightly better than average.