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Film review: ‘The Devil’s Double’

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You get two Uday Husseins for the price of one in The Devil’s Double.

The Details

The Devil’s Double
Two and a half stars
Dominic Cooper, Ludivine Sagnier, Raad Rawi
Directed by Lee Tamahori
Rated R
Beyond the Weekly
Official Movie Site
IMDb: The Devil’s Double
Rotten Tomatoes: The Devil’s Double

Loosely based on a true story, The Devil’s Double casts British actor Dominic Cooper (Mamma Mia!) in an ostensibly juicy dual role à la The Prince and the Pauper, with the prince being Saddam Hussein’s psychotic son Uday and the pauper an army lieutenant forced to serve as Uday’s look-alike decoy. That Cooper isn’t Iraqi doesn’t give you as much pause as you might think—he manages to pass, for the most part. The real problem is that Uday, snorting gigantic lines of coke and trolling for buxom schoolgirls, proves roughly a thousand times more compelling than the beleaguered hero, who does little but whine about his luxurious misfortune. It’s like a Batman movie in which Batman isn’t even permitted the dignity of fighting crime, merely watching from the wings as a gleefully amoral supervillain steals scene after scene.

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Previous Discussion:

  • The title promises something a lot more fantastical than the movie delivers, and the dull restraint is a poor substitute for all-out jungle madness.

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  • The entire plot of this stylish, occasionally clever action movie amounts to little more than a bunch of idiots shooting at each other.

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