‘The Double’ Trailer: “You’re in My Place”

Jesse Eisenberg in The Double

It looks like doppelgangers, weirdly, are going to be one of the micro-trends of 2014. Earlier this month we got The Pretty One, an indie dramedy about a young woman who assumes her dead twin sister’s identity, and next month we’re getting Denis Villeneuve’s Enemy, starring Jake Gyllenhaal trying to track down a man who looks just like him.

Further down on the calendar is The DoubleRichard Ayoade‘s adaptation of the Fyodor Dostoevsky novella. Jesse Eisenberg stars as both milquetoast Simon, who is horrified to discover that his exact likeness / polar opposite, the brash, charismatic James, is taking over his life.

The first few trailers did a great job of getting across the nightmarish vibe of the tale, but the newest one offers a better sense of the plot, as well as a bigger dose of Ayoade’s humor and wit. Check it out after the jump.

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only-lovers-10

Leave it to Jim Jarmusch to take a tired trend — vampires — and give it new life. Only Lovers Left Alive landed on my top 10 of 2013 list, as well as Russ’ most anticipated of 2014 list, and the latest trailer from the U.K. may offer some clues as to why.

I’ll be honest: There’s not much in the way of new footage here. But it’s been a couple of months since the last promo, and there are certainly worse ways to spend 30 seconds than basking in the cool glow of Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton as shot by Jarmusch. Hit the jump to watch the video.

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The Double

Richard Ayoade has come a long way from the days when he was known primarily to Brit comedy nerds as ubergeek Maurice Moss from The IT Crowd. He wowed TIFF in 2010 with his feature directing debut Submarine, and returned to the festival earlier this year to earn still more buzz with his sophomore effort, The Double.

Based on the novella by Fyodor Dostoevsky, the surreal comedy follows meek, overlooked office worker Simon James (Jesse Eisenberg), whose life is complicated by the appearance of his doppelganger James Simon (also Eisenberg). Identical to Simon in every way, only far more confident, charismatic, and ruthless, James swoops in and starts taking everything Simon wants but can’t have: the esteem of his colleagues, the affections of his office crush (Mia Wasikowska), and so on.

The new trailer has just arrived, and you can see it after the jump.

 

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TRACKS-header-1

In 1977 a young woman walked across nearly 2000 miles of Australian outback, accompanied only by her dog and four camels, mostly because she wanted to. Naturally people said she was crazy, and failed to understand what she was trying to accomplish. Now her story has been adapted to film, with Mia Wasikowska starring. John Curran (Stone, The Painted Veil) directed Tracks, and the footage at least looks just as beautiful and austere as the depths of the desert can be. Have a look at the trailer below. Read More »

Alice in Wonderland

Briefly: Wow, that was fast. Mere weeks after first hearing about Jon Favreau‘s live-action 3D remake of The Jungle Book, Disney has given the film a release date. It’ll open October 9, 2015, making it the first film to claim a date in that month. But that’s not all. Disney also announced the follow up to the billion dollar hit Alice in Wonderland will come out a year later. Alice in Wonderland 2, starring Johnny Depp and Mia Wasikowska, opens May 27, 2016. James Bobin (The Muppets) will direct.

Also, Ron Howard‘s sea-bound film, Heart of the Sea starring Chris Hemsworth, will be released March 13, 2015. [ERC]

The Double

Five years ago, Richard Ayoade was mostly familiar to American audiences, if he was familiar at all, as ubernerd Maurice Moss from The IT Crowd. Since his 2010 directorial debut Submarine, however, he’s also known as… well, okay, he’s still the guy from The IT Crowd, but now people might also know him as a promising young filmmaker with style and wit to spare.

This year, he’s back with his sophomore directorial effort, The Double. A loose adaptation of the novel by Fyodor Dostoevsky, this dark comedy follows a man (Jesse Eisenberg) who is driven to insanity by the sudden appearance of his doppelganger (also Eisenberg). Think of it as Black Swan with less ballet and more soul-crushing office work, perhaps. Or that episode of Buffy where Xander gets split in two.

Mia Wasikowska, Wallace Shawn, and Submarine actors Noah Taylor and Yasmin Paige also star. Watch the first trailer after the jump.

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The Turning

Omnibus films are tricky beasts. Their very structure tends to make them wildly uneven, particularly if the director and stars change between each segment. But even if the occasional dud is all but unavoidable, a couple of really great pieces can make the whole thing worth watching.

The Turning consists of seventeen interconnected shorts, each based on the short story collection of the same title by Aussie author Tim Winton. It’s too early to tell if any of them are any good, but the ambition on display, at least, is admirable. The director and star lineup is intriguing as well. Mia Wasikowska and David Wenham are among those behind the camera, and Cate Blanchett, shows up as the lead of one chapter, with Rose Byrne, Hugo Weaving, Richard Roxburgh, and Miranda Otto also playing roles. Check out the first trailer after the jump.

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Mia Wasikowska

Guillermo del Toro‘s Crimson Peak has been picking up A-listers at an impressive clip, but now the casting’s hit a bit of a snag. Emma Stone, who was the first star to sign on for the film back in January, has now dropped out.

Fortunately, del Toro’s already closing in on a more than suitable replacement. Mia Wasikowska is reportedly in talks to fill the part, provided she can get the scheduling to work out. Benedict CumberbatchJessica Chastain, and Charlie Hunnam remain attached. More details, including character info, after the jump.

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ONLY-LOVERS-LEFT-ALIVE-4

A new film from indie mainstay Jim Jarmusch is always an event, even if he makes films that are much smaller than “event” really suggests. His new picture, his first in four years, is called Only Lovers Left Alive. It stars Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska and Anton Yelchin in a genre-influenced story featuring vampires and music.

Hiddleston has described the film as a “love story,” and the bare bones of the plot are that “an underground musician (Hiddleston), deeply depressed by the direction of human activities, reunites with his resilient and enigmatic lover (Swinton).” The trick is that both characters are centuries old.

The press book from Cannes gives us a full synopsis of the film,  but even better also offers a statement from Jarmusch about the film. In addition, we’ve got photos from the press book, along with two clips that surfaced not long ago. Read More »