Confessions Of A Cinema Junkie: The Art Of Reversals, The Caper Film and Something Like A Comedy Of Manners In Tony Gilroy’s ‘Duplicity’

“It’s called a confidence game. Why? Because you give me your confidence? No. Because I give you mine.”
— Mike from House Of Games

“Well, maybe I don’t! I had ten good years with Cole, and I want them back! I gotta have a partner! I looked and I looked and believe me, brother, I kissed a lot of fucking frogs, and you’re my prince!”
— Myra Langtry from The Grifters

“It’s like seeing someone for the first time, and you look at each other for a few seconds, and there’s this kind of recognition like you both know something. Next moment the person’s gone, and it’s too late to do anything about it.”
— Jack Foley from Out Of Sight

Tony Gilroy‘s Duplicity is the ultimate cinematic cock tease. Duplicity has everything going for it right from the starting gate, but ultimately the film fizzles where it should sizzle. It is not a bad film, far from it, but after all is said and done, one wonders if they have just seen a comedy of manners written with enough reversals to give David Mamet a run for his money. Although “fuck” is never used enough to give it the traditional David Mamet touch, it is con game film. Tony Gilroy’s screenplay may be too smart for its good. Steven Spielberg had confessed that the film was too confusing for him to understand so he passed on directing it.

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