Enemy

Enemy

DVD
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Adam Bell, a glum, disheveled history professor who seems disinterested even in his beautiful girlfriend Mary. Watching a movie on the recommendation of a colleague, Adam spots his double; a bit-part actor named Anthony St. Clair, and decides to track him down. The identical men meet and their lives become bizarrely and irrevocably intertwined.
Publisher: Santa Monica, California : distributed by Lionsgate, [2014]
Edition: Widescreen.
Branch Call Number: DVD-AD DRAMA ENEM
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (90 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.

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r
rinaldoverde
Aug 26, 2018

Among the top 5 worst movies I ever wasted 90 minutes on, all the time naively waiting for something to happen. Pretentious pap without a shred of meaning. Someone told me once to never buy anything made in Canada with moving parts. This also apparently applies to movies. Nothing there to give a rating.

n
Nursebob
Apr 26, 2018

Filmed in an appropriately monochromatic Toronto of faded buildings and yellow smog, Denis Villeneuve’s psychosexual phantasm of a film hovers somewhere between the twisted suspense of an older Hitchcock and the mental aberrations of a younger Cronenberg. Shored up by Gyllenhaal’s bravura double performance as history professor Adam Bell and lookalike bit actor Anthony Clare, as well as a worthy supporting cast that includes Isabella Rossellini as Bell’s enigmatic mother, Mélanie Laurent as his frigid girlfriend, and Toronto’s own Sarah Gadon as Clare’s pregnant wife, Javier Gullón’s adaptation of José Saramago’s novel knows just how much to reveal through delicate clues and how much to obscure beneath layers of jarring metaphor—a visit to a strip club resonates with id impulses, spiders make for some startling cameos, and Adam’s class lectures on despots and control wax prophetic. And throughout it all Villeneuve holds the reins with both hands, letting Gyllenhaal stretch his wings (he really does manage to play two different men thanks in part to some clever filming) yet never allowing the situation to spin into absurdity. Bell’s panicky confusion grows proportionally to Clare’s oddly vindictive spite while the two women face an identity crisis of their own leading to a host of closing images that confound even as they illuminate. “Chaos is order yet undeciphered” states the author in an opening quotation, a sentiment Villeneuve takes to heart as he hints and prods but leaves the final codebreaking to his audience.

r
reginator_22
Jan 14, 2018

One of the weirdest movies I've ever seen. When you have to Google what the ending means, I don't think that's a good thing.

c
ClarkHarveyRoth
Dec 18, 2017

Wow, I have to say I'm shocked at all the negative feedback on this film. Apologies to those members waiting for the hold request...on the bright side I guess I've been delaying what may be for you an absolutely boring, pointless film experience. Hahaha. x-] I freaking loved this movie, noting that it's always a challenge to portray tedium without being tedious, but I never thought we were drifting into that territory. Jake Gyllenhaal performed brilliantly in duplicate, the slow burn of the unfolding story was nice & cohesive, with some powerful insights into envy, disillusionment, & personal darkness. The ending is totally jarring, & lifts the entire narrative into the realm of folklore almost, comparable to the karmic blowback of Jan Svankmajer's "Conspirators of Pleasure". Definitely worth ignoring the haters on this one...five stars on stage wearing nothing but high heels! CR

r
Reading_Right
Dec 06, 2017

Bizarre, surreal, dark, and creepy. A real downer; even if this could make sense.
And again, aside from all that is the one thing that plagues so many films:
NO ONE WOULD ACT OR REACT THE WAY THEY CONTINUALLY HAVE THE MAIN CHARACTERS DO, in 95% of the scenes. Oh, and lots of gratuitous nudity. (There always is bad films...)
Your Canadian Tax $ at work!! : P

b
Bebu
Jun 18, 2017

Pretty strange and not very interesting. You never really got any insight into the characters and they were all pretty boring anyway.

w
Wootex
May 18, 2017

Finally a movie that explores the deep philosophical question of whether or not Jake Gyllenhaal likes blueberries.

b
bacchusg
Mar 31, 2017

A wife-swappin' fantasy? Shot in fulvous yellow in Toronto; the women are actually more interesting: Isabella Rosselini as mother, Mélanie Laurent, the blonde, name? She's much better in A Royal Night Out as young QEII. Is Canadian Villeneuve overrated? Can't wait to see his Blade Runner sequel.....

c
chriscoleman
Aug 25, 2016

This is a Canadian art film with precious little dialogue and a lot of weirdness. It starts with a dark room of men around a marble table. On the table is a naked woman masturbating. Then we see an unkempt college history professor named Adam Bell. Adam's girlfriend Mary tells him she wants to try dating again, but 10 minutes with Adam and you can see why she broke up in the first place--he leads an incredibly dull life and is depressed all the time. Adam stops at a video store and rents a film. Halfway through the film is a man who looks exactly like him, an actor named Daniel St. Clair. Adam becomes obsessed with St. Clair and learns his real name is Anthony Claire. He finds out where he lives, pretends to be him, and picks up mail that gives Anthony's real address and phone number. So he calls him. Then things get even weirder. We see Anthony in the same dark room with men and the marble table. This time the naked woman puts a platter on the table and removes the cover. It's a huge tarantula. Suddenly we're back to Anthony's wife Helen who finds Adam's name in Anthony's pocket and goes to see him at the college where he teaches. She is shocked because he looks exactly like her husband. Anthony calls Adam and insists on meeting. He shows Adam a scar on his abdomen which freaks out Adam and Adam runs. Anthony stalks Adam and sees his beautiful girlfriend Mary. He's a serial cheater and wants to have sex with Mary, so he goes to Adam and insists he become Adam, take Mary on a weekend getaway, and then they'll be "even". (Yeah, makes no sense at all.) Anthony and Mary check into a hotel and go at it like rabbits until she sees the suntan where his missing wedding ring is. And she realizes it's not Adam. She wants to go home. On the way home, Anthony tries shoving her out of the speeding car and the car flips. Meanwhile, Adam goes to Anthony's apartment and dresses like Anthony. The bell hop talks to him in the elevator about the club and the room and how he didn't get a key this time. Adam opens his mail, Anthony's mail, and there's a key inside, presumably to the tarantula club. He doesn't come right out and tell Helen who he is, but she met him once at the college and later that night asks him if he had fun teaching that day. So she knows. Later, she cuddles with him in bed and it's unclear if anything else happens. In the morning the radio announces a fatal car crash in the tunnel early that morning (Anthony and Mary) and Adam switches the channel to a radio station. Then he goes into the living room where he hears Helen, only now she's a giant tarantula. :0 Didn't see that coming. This film came from a novel and if you read the synopsis for the novel on Wikipedia it's supposedly about doubles, as in clones. That did not come across at all. As far as I know, the novel had nothing to do with tarantulas either. Bizarre and not very watchable.

f
franque
Jul 31, 2016

If you are a person who is really into psychology, particularly Freud, and thinks that you think "deeply" than this is the film for you. Fans of films like Eraserhead & Vanilla Sky will spend hours picking over Enemy to discern it's symbolism & meaning. Thankfully the rest of us will see it for what Enemy is which is a total waste of time & money (yes even watching it for free is too costly) & an exercise in pseudo-intellectualism for its own sake. Here's what the movie means if you didn't get it: Women are the downfall of men. Yep, all these years after feminism, sexual freedom, and supposed self actualization, Hollywood still propagandizes the idea that women's sexuality is just too damn powerful. *sigh* Good performances do not make up for the fact that this movie is basically the meta sexist version of Stephen King's 90's TV version of It. Kinda good...until the spiders take over.

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