The Devil's Double

Watch The Devil's Double

"The 80's were brilliant, if you were in charge."
  • R
  • 2011
  • 1 hr 48 min
  • 7.1  (63,530)
  • 52

The Devil's Double is a 2011 biographical war-crime drama film based on the life of Latif Yahia, who was forced to become the body double of Saddam Hussein's son, Uday Hussein, during the Iraq War. The film stars Dominic Cooper, who plays both Yahia and Uday, as well as Ludivine Sagnier and Raad Rawi. The film begins in the late 1980s, as Latif Yahia is summoned to Saddam Hussein's palace and is offered an opportunity that he cannot refuse. Uday, Saddam's notorious, ruthless and sadistic son, who rules with an iron fist, is in need of a body double to provide protection against assassination attempts. After a few tests and gaining confidence in his striking resemblance to Uday, Yahia is trained in a series of trials to mimic Uday's speech, manners and behavior.

Initially hesitant, Yahia is pushed into following through with his new, dangerous job upon witnessing the death of a soldier during one of Uday's immoral stunts. Living the life of Uday is twisted, grandiose lifestyle — he has access to limitless drugs, vehicles, women and everything else his heart desires. However, this lavish life is just a cover for Uday's psychotic and deranged behavior. Yahia begins to witness firsthand the level of violence and debauchery that Uday indulges in, and it isn't long before the line between the two men blur in a way that even he can't quite fathom.

As time goes on, Yahia sees the atrocities of the ruling family and realizes that he has no escape from the world that Uday has built around him. Despite gaining the trust of Uday and his associates, Yahia is constantly subjugated to Uday's erratic behavior, immoral actions and his attempts to become close to him.

Eventually, Yahia becomes increasingly disillusioned with his role as Uday's double and the abuse that accompanies it. He develops a friendship with Sarrab (played by Ludivine Sagnier), a young woman forced into a relationship with Uday by her father. As the situation becomes more dangerous for him, he begins to plan his escape, and although it is a daunting task, he is determined to make it out of Iraq alive.

The Devil's Double is a thoroughly intense film, and the actors do well in their respective roles. Dominic Cooper in particular delivers a stunning performance as both Yahia and Uday, with the two characters being distinctively different from one another in every possible way. Cooper manages to capture Uday's persona and the way he carries himself convincingly - he's able to equally portray his violent, volatile behavior and his narcissistic, insensitive side.

The film is also shot beautifully, with the use of vivid colors throughout the film portraying the opulence and decadence in Uday's world. The score is equally impressive, with music that almost always complements the events happening on screen.

Overall, The Devil's Double is a well-crafted, compelling film that tells an important story highlighting the devastating impacts of dictatorship and the immense cost of living under it. The film serves as a testament to the rarely-spoken-of nature of power dynamics the world over. The Devil's Double is a film that deserves to be seen, if only to demonstrate the lengths of tyranny - and the impact that can have on the human mind.

The Devil's Double is a 2011 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 48 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.1 and a MetaScore of 52.

The Devil's Double
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 48 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.1  (63,530)
  • Metascore