Duplicity (2009)

by missizziemcguinness


A little professional courtesy would make this a lot less awkward’ 

Duplicity is about two corporate spies called Ray (Clive Owen) and Claire (Julia Roberts) who are involved in a passionate love affair when they go on a mission to grab the formula for a product that their opposing companies are prepared to launch.

This is definetly not my favourite film, and it’s very hard to find a Clive Owen film that is better than Children of Men. I’m not a very big fan of most of Julia Roberts’ films, and the two previously starred in Closer together about five years prior to this film being made. Their romance in the film was passionate but often kind of wooden and forced. I think they were suppose to have chemistry as an on screen couple but I didn’t feel anything between them, except for when they woke up in that hotel room. They would be yelling at each other for a good ten minutes, followed by an intimate scene that would either cut to after wounds or you would presume what they did. After a while, it got a bit repetitive, and I had no idea why Paul Giamatti and the other guy were having a slow motion fight in the rain at the beginning of the film until it turned out that they were from opposite companies. It was comical, though. It was a good attempt at the ‘opposites attract’ idea but the jumpy ‘enter city or country, three weeks earlier’ thing made the film a bit repetitive but I think it was used for effect.

Regardless of that, Paul Giamatti was very good in his role, and it makes you realize about competitors when launching a product, in this case, pizza and anti baldness shampoo. It was also a pleasure to see Clive Owen strutting around looking dapper and getting to hear his lovely deep voice but other than that, the film fell flat, and as I have an odd celebrity crush on him, the bit where he walks into the room wearing the towel was probably the best part of the movie, but he looks bored for the rest of it. At one point, he puts on an American accent, and that was certainly interesting to watch. His disguise of wearing a suit and aviator glasses at every location that they were in and meeting up with Julia Roberts showed coinincidence. I was only really watching him, and the film made good use of montage and parallel editing, and using a fast paced soundtrack in the action scenes.

The movie teaches about having trust if you have a supposed passionate romance only for a formula for a product, and it shows that people will always be listening in on you, having your voice messages and tricking you. The ending scene where they are both alone in that large room with the marble floor wondering if they were only in Rome was also a coincidence, and leaves the rest of it up for interpretation.

So-so movie with a fairly ok cast but some scenes fell flat and the movie itself seemed a little too complicated and repetitive, though it might require a second viewing to fully understand it. There were also a lot of familiar faces. The film wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t amazing either, but they made good use of the establishing shot as it isn’t just set in one place. Some scenes were more memorable than others, and it was a generally ok movie but it doesn’t help that I’m not a huge fan of Julia Roberts.