Double Take

Johan Grimonprez, Belgium / Germany / The Netherlands, 2009, color / black and white, 35mm, 80'
Synopsis

The Cold War, Hitchcock, and the rise of television are ingeniously interconnected in this collage of space-race news footage, hilarious coffee ads, and excerpts from Hitchcock's thrillers. Was the Cold War just one huge MacGuffin? Double Take is a cinematic elaboration of the installation "Looking for Alfred," which features a series of Hitchcock lookalikes. The film itself is a search for significance in coincidental events that echoes the mechanism of paranoia. Johan Grimonprez, who caused a furor with his documentary Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y, uses this elegantly composed essay to say a great deal about the rise of television and the way we view historical events. Starting with Nixon and Khrushchev's famous "kitchen debate" in 1959, television came to exert an ever-increasing influence on politics. Meanwhile, Hitchcock watched his TV show Alfred Hitchcock Presents get interrupted by advertisements for the first time. He liked to joke about the medium, saying, "Television is like the American toaster: you push the button and the same thing pops up every time." Double Take was inspired by Jorge Luis Borges's essay August 25, 1983. Placing mirrors next to mirrors, it allows a young Hitchcock to meet his older self, and is also a portrait of his doppelganger Ron Burrage.

IDFA Awards given out in Durban, Montevideo and Sarajevo August 27, 2015 | Three IDFA Awards were handed out over the summer to promising projects pitched at three international film markets. As part of the awards, all winners will attend IDFA in November.
IDFAcademy Summer School report July 8, 2015 | Emerging filmmakers from all over the world came together for an uncharacteristically hot week in Amsterdam to work on their documentary projects with renowned tutors such as Victor Kossakovsky and Cecilia Lidin.
IBF announces May selection July 7, 2015 | The IDFA Bertha Fund has concluded the second selection round for 2015. Eleven documentary projects from countries like Nepal, Kyrgyzstan, South Sudan, Uruguay and Georgia will be supported by the fund in its classic scheme.
New Media at IDFA 2015 July 7, 2015 | For those interested in the creative potential of digital technology, virtual reality and interactive media, this year's IDFA will have more to offer than ever before.
Errol Morris central guest at IDFA 2015 June 30, 2015 | Renowned filmmaker Errol Morris will compile this year's Top 10 program at IDFA. The festival will also be screening a retrospective of Morris's work.

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