News from the Locarno Festival

Deux Rémi, deux – One Rémi too Many

Deux Rémi, deux – One Rémi too Many



Rémi is an ordinary guy. As harmless and discrete as a wandering cat. His very normalcy, however, is what a writer would find of particular interest. How tempting indeed, to disturb his daily routine with an element of chaos. For example, a perfect double, appearing out of nowhere. The resulting variations of imbroglios and confrontations are infinite.

Pierre Léon returns to Locarno with an original adaptation of Dostoevsky’s The Double, rich with joyous twists and turns that unfold at a swift rhythm and exult in vibrant contrasts of light and color. Léon’s intimate knowledge of the Russian master allows him to make many a judicious choice here. Primarily, he detaches himself from the gloom usually relied upon by authors less imaginative than the duo he forms with co-writer Renaud Legrand.

Cheering up the Doppelgänger scenario, they give Rémi’s adventures a freer emotional balance and grant their characters more credit. The female lead thumbs her nose at temptations to make her the mere object of seductive manipulations, improvising instead a very Doinelian investigation. The double himself is more intriguing than spooky and Pascal Cervo’s great dual performance titillates the viewer’s curiosity more even than their loyalty. Trust characters to reveal their full potential for fantasy and they won’t disappoint.

Aurélie Godet

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