I got a copy of Devil’s Double for Christmas. I had been interested to see Māori director Lee Tamahori’s first film in four years. The premise also sounded interesting. Devil’s Double is based on the life story of Latif Yahia who had been employed in the presidential Iraqi Palace under the leadership of Saddam Hussein as a body double of his eldest son Uday Hussein.
Unfortunately I was disappointed by the film. I seemed the the aim for this film was to market toward a mainstream audience or maybe even European television audience, but I feel the story would have been better served if told from a more Iraqi perspective. It bothered me that the film was not it Arabic and that the male and female leads were played by European seemingly non-Arab actors. They weren’t able to pull it off. Saddam Hussein also looked like he was being played by Rush Limbaugh with a fake black moustache.
The characters were underdeveloped. In the case of Uday Hussein excessive coke snorting, violence against women, and random gunfire were used to illustrate his irrational lustful insanity. However the violence came of cartoonish, and although I became tense and uncomfortable at the thought of a woman being raped and committing suicide on her wedding day. I wasn’t drawn into the reality of the situation.
Overall the movie is an average action film and I will give it 7 out of 10.