Review: Deception, sex and twins in L’Amant Double

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye - Credit: Curzon Artificial Eye

French enfant terrible Francois Ozon returns to the sexually charged delights of his earlier films for this heated psychological thriller of a disillusioned young woman and relationship with her therapist and his twin.

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye - Credit: Curzon Artificial Eye

L'Amant Double (18)

***

French enfant terrible Francois Ozon returns to the sexually charged delights of his earlier films for this heated psychological thriller, torn from the pages of Joyce Carol Oates's novel Lives Of Twins, which she penned under the pseudonym Rosamund Smith.

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye - Credit: Curzon Artificial Eye

It's about twins and there's lots of sex in it: so it's true to its title.


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Told that her stomach pains are mental, Chloe (Marine Vacth, who was Young and Beautiful in Ozon's Jeane et Julie) seeks help from a psychiatrist Paul Meyer (Daniel Craig lookalike Jérémie Renier) who then quits because he has fallen in love with her.

But is there some secret in his past that will sabotage their happiness?

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye

L'Amant Double. Photo: Curzon Artificial Eye - Credit: Curzon Artificial Eye

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He remains an enigma and she discovers that her mysterious beau has a doppelganger, a twin brother he refuses to talk about called Dr Louis Delord (Renier again).

Unlike his sibling, Louis is fully in touch with his sexual desires and he inspires Chloe to embark on an orgasmic journey of self-satisfaction that forces her to choose between the brothers.

Ozon's erotic thriller is silly but done with such style that it hardly matters.

Indeed the silliness becomes part of the pleasure, much like in the good De Palma films. It also dabbles in the odd moment of Cronenberg body horror.

The story drifts in and out of dreams and the elegant staging means you never really know what is real or whose head you are in.

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