(This is Enemy film review, which is a psychological thriller film from the director of Arrival)
*This film contains NUDITY and SEX SCENES
Ever watched something that makes you gasp in confusion and yet at the same time be mersmerised by it? Enemy is one such film that makes you question what you have been watching for the last 1.5 hours.
It is directed Denis Villeneuve, who also directed Blade Runner 2049 and Arrival, and stars Jake Gyllenhaal, Mélanie Laurent, Sarah Gadon, and Isabella Rossellini. Without further ado, let’s jump to the Enemy film review below!
When a history teacher discovered his exact twin from a film DVD that he rented, he went to look for him. However, when the two met, their relationship among each other became more complicated as their own lives were dragged into it. What and who was the enemy to each of their lives?
Enemy Film Review
The premise itself is …complicated and complex, even though the overall storyline itself is relatively simple. In a summary, it’s basically about a man discovering his twin and then the two kinda swapped their lives. But since this is a Villeneuve film, we should have expected that it will be much more than a simple premise.
In fact, I myself don’t really understand the premise itself very well, especially the ending. There are LOTS of surrealism in this film, hidden subtly, and also not so subtly in some of the scenes. Disregarding the spider scenes which either appear in the dreams and the ending, the whole film itself seems to try to portray someone with dual personalities. But the film never ever tries to confirm or deny this, as we can see in certain parts where things seem to take place in the main character’s mind, while in the others, he is seen talking and arguing with his twin in real time in physical space, though only in places where no one else is around.
There are LOTS of surrealism in this film, hidden subtly, and also not so subtly
But, I think that there are certain clues hidden inside that seems to suggest that there is only one man to begin with, especially with the wife’s sad reaction upon discovering the other ‘twin’, which does not make sense, and she even questions the other’ twin’ that she suspects he already knows about this. This just doesn’t make sense, but yeah, the film tries to mindfck you subtly, and then at the end, turns it up 100% for a very confusing mindfck.
Overall, the premise is alright, but the way it’s directed keep things interesting, especially with how we are shown the lives of the two ‘twins’ overlap each other and then merges into one, and later ‘swapped’. So many possible iterations of the premise that it keeps people guessing even until now.
The pacing is a very slow one, though the film manages to keep things interesting by introducing progress in the story and then up the ante until the ending. Regardless, halfway I was almost feeling bored and thus this is definitely meant to be watched by certain audiences that prefer slow scenes that are filled with surrealism.
And also the cinematography are very graphic and visual, as if I’m watching an artwork displayed in the musuem, and the whole colour is Yellowish, which gives a certain feeling of loneliness that is intermixed with a bit of secret, and drunkness?
I must say Jake did his best in this film by portraying two very different characters very well. His body languages show how proficient he is in acting out someone who is quiet and introvert, and also someone who is the exact opposite, and all these achieved solely from body expressions and the way the characters talked. The whole film basically depended on his performance to make it or break it. And in this case, he kind of saved the film from being total boredom, and from being too artistic of a film.
The other characters like Sarah Gadon actually deserved praise for her performance as a pregnant wife. Her character becomes another pillar that supports the film, as it allows us to see the effect that the ‘twins’ caused to the people that they loved. She represents the feminity and also as kind of a figure that is both imposing, and yet loving, but is also feared by one of the twins, or maybe both. So it adds depth to otherwise a surrealistic film that is almost devoid of any other character interactions.
The whole film basically depended on his performance to make it or break it
The film basically focused much more on Gyllenhaal and Sarah by the end, but the other supporting characters did their roles pretty well too, albeit pretty minor.
The soundtrack is similar to those artistic film, where the melody is slow to compliment the pacing of the film itself. It’s alright but does not stand out.