review by Bobby Blakey
Karen Gillan has been on fire in the last few years starring as Nebula in the MCU as well as the Jumanji flicks. More recently she has kicked some ass in the Gunpowder Milkshake and currently starring in The Bubble for Netflix. Her next flick Dual co-stars Beulah Koale, Theo James and Aaron Paul from The Art of Self Defense director Riley Stearns. Could this film offer up an interesting premise worth checking out or will it fail to be worth duplicating?
Dual follows Sarah opts for a cloning procedure to ease her loss on her friends and family upon receiving a terminal diagnosis. When she makes a sudden and miraculous recovery, her attempts to have her clone decommissioned fail and lead to a court-mandated duel to the death. Now she has one year to train her body and mind for the fight of her life.
The premise for this film was instantly interesting to me, but wasn’t sure outside of that on the overall tone. Despite it being a sci-fi film of sorts it is very much grounded in the real world as weird as it may be. Honestly with the idea I think I expected a bit more action or at least a big action payoff, but that is not here at all, but there is a quirky bizarre movie that I found strangely entertaining which isn’t overly unexpected coming from Stearns.
Right from the start you knew something seemed off with Gillan’s character that I thought was just her, but it ended up being pretty much everyone in the film. Every line is straight forward, morose, and lacks feeling, but clearly by design. This will put some off, but for me it gave an interesting narrative to the world we were dealing with and the sadness that is her life.
The story on the surface seems like just a strange little tale, but there is some deeper meanings here dealing with the mundane life of unhappiness. The ending was a bit of an acquired taste and I was hoping for more, but it is also the perfect transition and exposes the real issues in her life that was there all the time.
This film won’t work for everyone and I would even assume from the performances alone most will likely be turned off, but after sitting with it for a bit I really dug it. It’s far from perfect, but defiantly stands out as something all its own and worth giving it a try.
In addition to the film this release offers up bonus content including commentary and “The Making of DUAL” featurette. Grab your copy of Dual available now on Blu-ray and DVD from RLJE Films.