Double Take (2001)

(On DVD, August 2002) It doesn’t take much to deliver a fun buddy crime comedy, and that’s exactly what Robert Gallo does, after a laborious start, with Double Take. Granted, the film sank at the box-office, but once you get past the irritating opening, the film settles down as one of the twistiest fun thrillers since Wild Things. (It never attains the earlier film’s trash-thriller brilliance, of course. The lack of sex scenes alone is enough to take it down one notch.) While Eddie Griffin can often grate, you get used to him. Orlando Jones is a star throughout, though, as he switches comfortably from a chic Wall Street businessman to a loudmouth from the projects who just wants some Malt-Liquor. This whole theme of appearance versus reality is Double Take‘s motif, given all the twists and counter-twists in the film. The film’s internal logic eventually comes to make sense after many exasperated gasps from the audience, but the external plausibility (ie; why go through all the trouble?) remains highly doubtful. In any case, the filmmakers on the DVD commentary track take as much time self-congratulating themselves than discussing the film itself. But that’s fine, because the film is a little surprise, a solid buddy comedy that holds up rather well to a commentary-enhanced second viewing. It grows on you. Naturally, it helps that the film stars three luscious black women, with particular nods to Garcelle Beauvais, who appears in full lingerie in one of the film’s most regrettably cut scene, now included on the DVD for your viewing pleasure. Also worth viewing on the DVD: A surprisingly interesting “filmmaker’s diary” making-of feature that gives a real feeling of being on a movie set.

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