‘The Double Hour’ DVD Review
Right off the bat, I should mention that I have an extreme bias towards psychological thrillers. I do, though, feel like there has been a movement towards more “pseudo”-psychological genre films that become highly overdone. These films may use psychology as a theme, but they try harder to make a good looking film (visually) rather than a good natured film (thematically).
On a related note, I’d like to mention that American cinema has gotten us (Americans) used to films that look great. Too many movies devalue dialogue and writing, instead opting for more effects-driven pictures. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of examples where this can be a good thing. However, in the case of a bunch of smaller budget, foreign films, the luxury of looking good isn’t available. Giuseppe Capotondi’s The Double Hour is an example of how smaller films can produce a thematically rich film with a raw style.
His film starts out as a romance. Sonia (Kseniya Rappoport), a “romantically uninvolved” woman, finds herself resorting to speed dating to find a potential lover. Guido (Filippo Timi), a “security guard”, is a seasoned speed dating pro that uses the event to simply find women to have sex with. When he meets someone as different as Sonia, he is forced to reevaluate his stance on dating.
Then the romance turns into a crime drama when a cabin getaway turns violent. Left dazed and disorientated, Sonia and Guido must figure out what is and isn’t going on.
I purposefully have left things in quotations as a reminder of the film’s tagline, “nothing is what it seems.” Given its nature, I can’t really say much more about The Double Hour without compromising the experience. With aspects of a drama, thriller, and horror, it’s easy to get caught up in the story. It also achieves in becoming a movie that needs to be watched more than once.
This elusive quality is what makes the DVD purchase somewhat of a necessity. There are a couple of extras to go with the film, too. They are as follows:
Behind-the-Scenes Featurette – By far the most interesting extra, this featurette is broken up into four different categories (protagonists, screenwriting, characters, and crew). It basically documents the different aspects of the film, completely solidifying the whole. There is a lot to take away from this feature.
Deleted Scenes – Although there are only three short deleted scenes, I couldn’t help but notice a facet of the movie (family) that could’ve been added. It would’ve been small, but probably effective.
Trailer – The pre-released theatrical trailer.
The Double Hour, an Italian movie presented with English subtitles, isn’t probably a movie you’ve heard of. However, if you get a chance to find a copy of the DVD, there is a great story to be seen. If you include Rappoport’s great performance, the topsy-turvy narrative, and the overall psychology of the film, it’s got a haunting punch. It’s not overly scary, but it’s definitely a twisted story, one that will hopefully resonate with you as much as it did with me.
The Double Hour is also available on several digital platforms, including iTunes, Amazon VOD and Vudu.