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Abstract

In his paper "Cinema's Doubles, Their Meaning, and Literary Intertexts" Pilar Andrade analyzes the figure of the double as an element of cinema. Andrade does not take under consideration films in which the double is considered merely as a clinical case with no mystery (for example as in David Fincher's Fight Club or Brad Anderson's The Machinist) or in which it is used as a useful piece to make the plot without referring to the fantasy world (as in Joel Schumacher's Bad Company); instead, Andrade focuses on films that make a clear connection between the alter ego and fantasy, including those where this alter ego is inside the hero/heroine or character and such films where the former and his/her double would live in a fantasy world as in science fiction. Andrade postulates that the double is a fertile theme included in the fantastic that has been chosen by many writers and film directors to deal with our fears and our anguish but also to embody our desires, although sometimes is has been a helping character as well. The presence of a double is perceived in most cases as a threat, an uncanny appearance, although sometimes the Doppelgänger can help. In many case he forces to question the rules of our ordinary judgement; his potential as a fantastic element rests perhaps on this effect and that is possibly the reason why he has inspired so many directors and writers in contemporary Western culture.

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