Doppelgänger (2015) Review

DopplegangerDoppelgänger (2015)

Director: Gian Guido Zurli

Written by: Gian Guido Zurli

Starring: Clelia Cicero, Stefano Torselli

Run Time: 58mins approx

22nd of July 2017, Anna Persico (Cicero) awakes one morning to find a mysterious red box near her bed. Inside the box, she finds a piece of paper covered in strange symbols. What follows is a surreal adventure as she sets out to discover the meaning of the symbols and find her missing friend.

15th of October 1817, police commissioner Fosco Oleari investigates the apparent suicide of servant girl Vittoria Clementi (who bares an uncanny resemblance to Anna) and the disappearance of the local doctor’s wife.

The two time periods intertwine and collide as Anna looks for answers.

Writer and Director Gain Guido Zurli has crafted a fairly decent, if not confusing and ultimately unsatisfying, horror/thriller with Doppelgänger. The film, at least in my opinion, seems very influenced by the works of David Lynch and just like his work most people are either going to love it or hate it.

Doppleganger 2Myself? Well I’m in the middle. There’s a lot to like here, the Lynchian aspects, intended or not, were a particular highlight for me. Whether it’s the soundtracks low industrial rumbling, which seems to have been plucked straight from Eraserhead, or some of it’s more surreal and other-worldly images (influenced by too many Lynch works to mention) there’s a lot here for fans of Lynch to admire.

I enjoyed the modern parts of the story, there’s a real sense of dread, danger and mystery in these segments with a lot of experimentation in regards to its cinematography and camera work. There are some truly striking visuals at play here. These parts reminded me of films such a ‘Lost Highway’ and ‘Mulholland Drive’ and were a real treat to watch.

Unfortunately the parts set 1817 were a real let down for me, the period costumes are impressive, yes, but nothing else really works, the acting feels more hammy in these sections, the lighting feels unnatural and too modern, like we’re watching a recreation scene in a TV docudrama, and despite the two separate stories connecting and intertwining I would have much preferred the story to have stayed in it’s 2017 setting.

The film is ultimately too confusing, I’m not sure whether it’s a cultural thing or not, but by the end I was left with more questions than answers. I’m all for ambiguous and mysterious stories but I felt cheated that so many plot points are left unresolved, especially in the modern segments.

Doppleganger3Despite all this you can tell the Director has put a lot in to this film and is passionate about the project, after all he is also the producer, writer, editor and the sound designer. If you’re a fan of David Lynch’s work and are looking to kill an hour I’d highly recommend Doppelgänger, there are enough references and homages in here to keep you interested. If you’re not a fan of Lynch or similar works then I wouldn’t steer clear of this, perhaps just proceed with caution.


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Jordan Hays

About Jordan Hays

I'm Jordan, from gloomy Nottingham. I watch an awful amount of films and occasionally write and make them too. Some of my earliest memories are watching films like 'Alien' and 'An American Werewolf in London' with my dad and this is why I have a soft spot for the horror genre. I also enjoy video games, comics, beer and heavy music.