Enemy, I came to find after watching, has been referred to as a head-scratching, erotic thriller. Take note of the word “erotic” because if you don’t you will be surprised as I was. There are several scenes involving nudity in this film.
Enemy is a film by the director of Prisoners (2013); I was a huge fan of Prisoners. Well, as much as you can be the fan of a movie that felt so real I left the theater feeling the weight of what I had just seen. It is not every director that can make you feel a movie the same was as I felt after leaving that one. Needless to say, I was impressed by the directing abilities of Denis Villeneuve. I began hearing great things about his latest film Enemy, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and wanted to make sure I saw it.
In Enemy “A man seeks out his exact look-alike after spotting him in a movie.” -IMDB
It may not be the first movie to deal with look-alikes, but it’s one of the best in recent memory.
Gyllenhall, Laurent and Gadon are fantastic in their roles. All of their emotion, confusion and despair can be felt without a spoken word. We meet Gyllenhaal as Adam, an English teacher at a university in Toronto, Canada. It’s obvious that Adam is stuck in a rut as he almost robotically goes through his daily routine with his girlfriend Mary (Mélanie Laurent, Inglorious Bastards). Eat, work, love, sleep, repeat… It’s a pattern. It’s not until a co-worker awkwardly suggests a movie to him that his world is turned upside down. Enter Anthony, Adam’s exact look-alike, living as an independent actor and married to Helen (Sarah Gadon, A Dangerous Method). Adam, in an attempt to understand what he is seeing, reaches out to Adam in order to meet him. It is their meeting that sets these two opposites on a collision course of sorts with only one possible outcome. What that is.. well.. you’ll have to see the movie.
It has been a long time since a movie ended and I had to loudly proclaim “What?!?!” If you watch this movie you will be confused.. I can almost guarantee it. I will call this the Villeneuve Effect (trademark pending). Just as Prisoners had me leaving the theater feeling the weight of what I saw, Enemy had my mind racing trying to figure out exactly what I just witnessed. Seriously, I scoured the internet for the next few days reading up on people’s theories. Sometimes, I just want to be entertained. Other times, I want to be forced to think, I want to form my own opinion, Enemy scratched that itch just right. I loved it!
The acting is great. The story, based off The Double (2002) a novel by José Saramago, is a fantastic on screen adaption. Though, this movie is not for everyone. There are certain scenes I could have done without though I understand the need for them within the confines of the story. I loved this movie, however, I would not recommend it to most due to some strong sexual imagery.
However, If you do watch this movie I guarantee you will need some help understanding some weird disturbing imagery. To help you out I am going to post a link to an explanation video I agree with that gave good perspective on this film.
Review in a Tweet
“[R] Mind bending erotic thriller. Nudity. Evocative imagery. Well Acted. Engrossing storyline. Great! #christcorenet”