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Dead Ringers Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

Two twin brothers, both renowned gynecologists, descend into madness after becoming romantically involved with the same woman in this disturbing, horrific drama. Jeremy Irons delivers a bravura performance as both Beverly and Elliot Mantle, Toronto-based surgeons who operate an exclusive gynecological clinic and share a reputation as brilliant innovators. They also share lovers, as the more aggressive, confident Elliott seduces women and later secretly allows the shier, more intellectual Beverly to reap the benefits. This arrangement is disturbed when Beverly falls in love with their newest conquest, Claire Niveau (Genevieve Bujold), a famous actress with an unusual gynecological deformity. Beverly's relationship with the hard-living Claire leads to him to turn away from Elliot and begin a dangerous involvement with drugs and alcohol. Elliot senses his brother's rapid decline into addiction and paranoia and attempts to save him, only to start falling victim to the same urges. Director David Cronenberg adapted the loosely fact-based tale to his own creepy purposes, tapping into primal fears regarding the uncanniness of twins and male sexual panic. His notorious gore was used sparingly here, however, with the film's most disturbing moments coming through suggestion, as in the display of a group of terrifying surgical instruments created by Beverly in his madness. Cronenberg's expertise with special effects proves crucial, however, as he and his regular cinematographer Peter Suschitzsky seamlessly combine Irons' two performances in a manner unrivalled by any previous depiction of twins. This visual achievement is more than matched by Irons, who delivers what may be his career performance, delineating the twins' differences and similarities and embodying their collapse in frighteningly believable fashion. The subject matter and chilly tone may be too intense for some viewers, but the brilliant central performance and intellectually provocative approach will prove thoroughly absorbing for others. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

  • Release date:September 23, 1988

Awards

Awarded by
Nominee
Category
Year
Status
Genie Awards Howard Shore Best Score 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Norman Snider Best Adapted Screenplay 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Peter Suschitzky Best Cinematography 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Ronald Sanders Best Editing 1989 Winner
Los Angeles Film Critics Association David Cronenberg Best Director 1987 Winner
Genie Awards David Cronenberg Best Director 1989 Winner
Genie Awards David Cronenberg Best Adapted Screenplay 1989 Winner
New York Film Critics Circle Jeremy Irons Best Actor 1988 Winner
Genie Awards Jeremy Irons Best Actor 1989 Winner
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Geneviève Bujold Best Supporting Actress 1987 Winner
Genie Awards Geneviève Bujold Best Actress 1989 Nominee
Genie Awards Wayne Griffin Best Sound Editing 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Andy Nelson Best Sound 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Bryan Day Best Sound 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Carol Spier Best Art Direction/Production Design 1989 Winner
Genie Awards David Giammarco Best Sound Editing 1989 Winner
Genie Awards Denise Cronenberg Best Costume Design 1989 Nominee

Cast

Jeremy Irons
as Elliot Mantle
Jeremy Irons
as Beverly Mantle
Geneviève Bujold
as Claire Niveau
Heidi von Palleske
as Cary
Barbara Gordon
as Danuta
Shirley Douglas
as Laura
Denise McLeod
as Art Gallery Lady
Rina Polley
as Soap Opera Character
Nicholas Rice
as M.C.
Nick Nichols
as Leo
Lynne Cormack
as Arlene
Damir Andrei
as Birchall
Miriam Newhouse
as Mrs. Bookman
Warren Davis
as Anatomy Class Supervisor
Nicholas Haley
as Elliot, Age 9
Marsha Moreau
as Raffaella
Denis Akiyama
as Pharmacist
Dee McCafferty
as Surgeon
Susan Markle
as Operating Room Nurse
Jane Luk
as Lecture Hall Nurse
Tita Trevisan
as Furniture Salesman
Jacqueline Hennessy
as Escort Twin Coral
Jill Hennessy
as Escort Twin Mimsy
David Walden
as Director
Liliane Stillwell
as Wardrobe Person
Bob Bainborough
as Mr. Glaser
Joe Matheson
as Sean
Hadley Kay
as Delivery Boy
Cynthia Eastman
as Sobbing Woman
Nora Colpman
as Mrs. Randall
Madeleine Atkinson
as Soap Opera Character
John Bayliss
as Performance Double
Graham Evans
as Picture Double
David Walden
as Director
Graham Evans
as Picture Double
John Bayliss
as Performance Double
Madeleine Atkinson
as Soap Opera Character
Tita Trevisan
as Furniture Salesman
Joe Matheson
as Sean
Miriam Newhouse
as Mrs. Bookman
Jill Hennessy
as Escort Twin Mimsy
Damir Andrei
as Birchall
Nicholas Haley
as Elliot, Age 9
Susan Markle
as Operating Room Nurse
Warren Davis
as Anatomy Class Supervisor
Denis Akiyama
as Pharmacist
Lynne Cormack
as Arlene
Rina Polley
as Soap Opera Character
Nora Colpman
as Mrs. Randall
Liliane Stillwell
as Wardrobe Person
Dee McCafferty
as Surgeon
Denise McLeod
as Art Gallery Lady
Jacqueline Hennessy
as Escort Twin Coral
Nick Nichols
as Leo
Hadley Kay
as Delivery Boy
Nicholas Rice
as M.C.
Cynthia Eastman
as Sobbing Woman
Bob Bainborough
as Mr. Glaser
Marsha Moreau
as Raffaella
Jane Luk
as Lecture Hall Nurse

Crew

David Cronenberg
Director
Joe Roth
Producer
Jack Geasland
Book Author
David Cronenberg
Screenwriter
Bari Wood
Book Author
Norman Snider
Screenwriter
Peter Suschitzky
Cinematographer
Fred Parris
Songwriter
Howard Shore
Composer (Music Score)
Steve Weslak
Editor
Ronald Sanders
Editor
Carol Spier
Production Designer
James McAteer
Art Director
Alicia Keywan
Supervising Art Director
David Cronenberg
Co-producer
Marc Boyman
Co-producer
John Board
Associate Producer
Carol Baum
Executive Producer
Sylvio Tabet
Executive Producer
Elinor Rose Galbraith
Set Designer
Denise Cronenberg
Costume Designer
Andy Nelson
Sound/Sound Designer
Bryan Day
Sound/Sound Designer
Deirdre Bowen
Casting
David Giammarco
Sound Editor
Wayne Griffin
Sound Editor
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