Retired CIA agent Paul Shepardson (Richard Gere, looking much younger than his 62 years) has been called in to assist with the investigation of a murder that bears a striking resemblance to those committed by Cassius, a Russian assassin that Shepardson tracked for most of his career. Convinced that Cassius is deceased, Shepardson is reluctant to get involved, but is finally pressured into the role by his former handler (Martin Sheen).
Shepardson finds himself paired with hotshot FBI agent Ben Geary (Topher Grace), a Harvard graduate and family man obsessed with the Cassius murders. Together, the two must follow a trail that ran cold more than twenty years ago, and uncover secrets about Cassius – and each other – that neither are prepared to deal with.
The first “surprise” in The Double happens about thirty minutes into the film, but it’s only a surprise if you haven’t seen the trailer, which tells the audience exactly what to expect and robs the film of the suspense and intrigue it tries so desperately to generate. Gere still has a commanding onscreen presence, and Grace retains the likeable boyish charm that gave him a career, but neither of them belong in this film, a by-the-numbers game of cat-and-mouse with scenes we’ve seen plenty of times before in much better films, and a final twist during the third act that is too outlandish to accept.
FINAL SCORE: 5/10