The twist here is that Richard Gere’s character is the bad guy. Naturally this gets far more twisted in the end as this is a spy thriller, and as the title suggests no one is exactly what they seem. The problem is the wait for the reveal of Gere’s character’s true nature, and that he’s Cassius (don’t worry, that isn’t a spoiler). It makes the opening scenes less impactful, especially where Grace’s character lays out his profiling of Cassius. Although this is somewhat made up in a scene later on. The most important thing this film misfires on is tension. Here we have an obviously easy tension builder, we know the bad guy and the good guy, they’re working together and the good guy is searching for the bad guy who’s right under his nose. This cat and mouse game is played incredibly underwhelming here. The twist ending proves why, as it seems the writer is creating from the stand point of already knowing the end and deciding not to play with the situation. This lends to weak plot development filled with tedious detective work.
Any attempt at drama here is thwarted by an unestablished connection between the audience and the characters, and between the characters themselves. Gere plays the bad guy well, but with such a monotonous script he is allowed to do little with the character. The team of Topher Grace and Richard Gere is great casting, these two play off each other well and had this been a better movie, each could have brought something amazing to the table. Had this film been done with the tension and more in the vein of Mr. Brooks it would have been better. Gere could easily reach the heights of Costner’s tantalizing performance.
Ultimately if you like detective or spy thrillers you may want to check The Double out, just don’t work up a sweat trying to find it. I’d suggest you watch Richard Gere and Claire Danes in The Flock first.
Director: Michael Brandt
Stars: Richard Gere, Topher Grace, Martin Sheen