02 June 2010

Double Take

Written & Directed by: Johan Grimonprez
Full credits at IMDb

Experimental films rarely get mainstream play. But Johan Grimonprez's Double Take, a found footage/new footage docuessay about paranoia, media, sinister mirror images and the Master of Suspense, places Alfred Hitchcock at its center and so it gets two weeks at Film Forum. A bona fide avant-gardist busting out of the Anthology ghetto, Grimonprez blends archival footage of Hitch's comic television introductions with scenes from his films (especially The Birds), vintage Folger's spots, Nixon debating Kruschev, newsreels, and bits of Walter Cronkite; this assemblage is then weaved through a dreamily shot short, narrated by a Hitchcock soundalike, about the director in 1962, meeting a time-hopping version of himself from the year he would die, 1980. (Grimonprez also employs a Hitchcock lookalike, evoking his previous short, "Looking for Alfred".)

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