Friday, November 07, 2014

"The Face of Love": falling for a copy of a person

The Face of Love” is another romantic drama on the doppelganger theme, although this time it is more purely psychological and less of a real mystery.  The film, directed by Arie Posin and written with Matthew McDuffie, has a Douglas Sirk quality.
Annette Bening plays Nikki, a southern California woman who has lost her husband Garret to a drowning in Mexico.  While expecting to live alone in an empty house, one day she spots a man Tom (Ed Harris) who resembles her husband strikingly.  First accepting the glance with an appropriate amount of pleasure, she soon tracks him down, and finds that he teaches art at a local college.  Their meeting is ackward.  Tom says “This is a college; they are not very spontaneous”.  Tom even admits he can look like a “scary dude”.  She manipulates the conversation into being about taking art lessons.  Eventually they start dating. Tom is also a painter, and Ed Harris here can remind us of “Pollock”. 

Her neighbor Roger (Robin Williams, in one of his last roles) has an eye on her, and tries to urge her to be cautious.

Her daughter Summer (Jess Weixler) throws a hissy fit when visiting her and discovering what is going on, and Nikki throws her daughter out.

Nikki also to contend with meeting Tom’s ex-wife (by divorce), Amy Brenneman.  Nikki invites Tom to Mexico, where Tom will find a photo from her previous marriage and realize what the relationship means.

How easy is it to confuse people who look similar?  How often do I want to believe that I have seen some particular person from a distance?  Free papers used to have “glances” sections.  And how reliable will facial recognition software (like from Hoyos Labs) be for biometrics? 

The official site is here (for Mockingbird Pictures and IFC).  The film can be rented on YouTube for $12.99 but I watched a Netflix DVD.
It's interesting that this story is among middle-aged to nearly elderly people.  There is no focus on sexual attractiveness in the conventional sense.
There’s no connection here to the French new wave film “In Praise of Love”, which I remember from a screenwriting class.  

Picture: Mine,  Is there a doppelganger here, way in the background?  

No comments: