Director Johan Grimonprez casts Alfred Hitchcock as a paranoid history professor, unwittingly caught up in a double take on the cold war period. The master says all the wrong things at all the wrong times while politicians on both sides desperately clammer to say the right things, live on TV. Double Take targets the global political rise of "fear as a commodity" in a tale of odd couples and double deals. As television hijacks cinema, and the Krushchev and Nixon debate rattles on, sexual politics quietly take off and Alfred himself emerges in a dandy new role on the TV, blackmailing housewives with brands they can't refuse. The novelist Tom McCarthy writes a plot of personal paranoia to mirror the political intrigue, in which Hitchcock and his elusive double increasingly obsess over the perfect murder - of each other! Subverting a meticulous array of TV footage and using The Birds as an essential metaphor, Grimonprez traces catastrophe culture’s relentless assault on the home, from moving images’ inception to the present day.
by Johan Grimonprez
with Ron Burrage, Mark Perry
Belgium / Germany / Netherlands 2009