Duplicity Parent Guide
For adult viewers who are willing to work at watching these endless twists, the film offers some entertaining and clever moments.
Parent Movie Review
In his ancient script The Art of War, the legendary Chinese figure Sun Tzu wrote, “If you know your enemies and know yourself, you will fight without danger in battles.” He also wrote, “All warfare is based on deception.”
Since the penning of this famous manuscript in 6th century BC, military leaders, political campaigners, sports teams, business strategists and even reality television contestants have been known to peruse this text in search of winning tactics.
Ray Koval (Clive Owen) and Claire Stenwick (Julia Roberts) also seem to be familiar with the concepts. Working as secret agents for the U.S. and Russian governments, the two spies meet at the American Consulate in Dubai where Claire undresses Ray (in more than one respect) and leaves the drugged and drowsy MI6 agent looking for a way to explain the loss of some important confidential codes.
Years later in New York, the pair crosses paths again. Both have moved on from their government jobs and are employed by rival, multi-national corporations. However when Howard Tully (Tom Wilkinson), one company’s CEO, hints at an impending breakthrough at his lab just days before his competitor (Paul Giamatti) is scheduled to address his own shareholders at their annual meeting, the two corporate spies see a way to line their pockets by joining forces. Working from within their respective companies, they plan to abscond with the discovery and sell it to the highest bidder.
The problem is these skilled emissaries have been trained to trust no one and that proves to be a problem in forming a lasting alliance. Meeting under clandestine conditions, the couple enjoys intimacy (which viewers see very little of) but either begin or end their liaison with one or both of them “testing” the other. Considering their highly suspicious natures, it’s hard to believe their plan or partnership works as well as it does.
Following the ins and outs of their scheme also proves to be difficult as Ray and Claire change their allegiances and their minds with surprising regularity. In addition, the plot skips around the time continuum in a sporadic fashion that makes it almost impossible to keep up unless you’re paying very close attention. Still for adult viewers who are willing to work at watching these endless twists, the film offers some entertaining and clever moments. Unfortunately, in the meantime, a glut of scatological slang, profanities and crude terms for sex are repeatedly used.
Given the highly competitive nature of these corporate enterprises, those caught up in the duplicitous activities portrayed in this film might be wise to follow some other, more modern advice that says, “The best defense is a good offense.”Starring Julia Roberts, Clive Owen, Tom Wilkinson, Tony Gilroy. Running time: 126 minutes. Theatrical release March 20, 2009. Updated July 17, 2017
Rating & Content Info
Why is Duplicity rated PG-13? Duplicity is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for language and some sexual content.
Despite their suspicious natures, Ray and Claire frequently enjoy secret liaisons. Ray is seen wearing only a towel and later kissing Claire’s bare back. A woman’s cleavage is seen along with a brief depiction of a bare breast. Photos are taken of a woman unclothing in her office, and she is shown in her bra. A woman’s thong underwear is shown and discussed. A man is intimate with several women in order to get information from them. The discussion of pornography along with sexual comments, innuendo and the frequent use of a crude term for sex are used in the script. Adults drink frequently at social events and at home. A man is drugged with a sleeping medicine. Companies use lies, spies, surveillance equipment and personal records to get ahead of their competition. A brief comment is made about drug dealers.
Page last updated July 17, 2017
More parents' guide for Duplicity after the break...
Duplicity Parents' Guide
Why is it so important to these executives to be the first or best at something? Do you agree with their methods of achieving that success? How long lasting is this kind of victory?
Considering their lack of trust and past betrayals, what do you think are the chances of Ray and Claire having a successful relationship? How important do you think trust is for a couple?
The most recent home video release of Duplicity movie is August 25, 2009. Here are some details…
Release Date: 25 August 2009
Duplicity comes to the home video market in two versions:
Duplicity on DVD is presented in widescreen, with audio tracks Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English, French and Spanish). Subtitles are provided in English, SDH, French and Spanish.
Also offered is an audio commentary with Writer/Director Tony Gilroy and Editor/Co-Producer John Gilroy.
Duplicity on Blu-ray Disc comes with DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (English) and DTS 5.1 Surround (French and Spanish). Subtitles are available in English, SDH, French and Spanish.
Bonus materials include:
- Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Tony Gilroy and Editor/Co-Producer John
- My Scenes
- Interactive Features: BD Live - Download Center
Related home video titles:
Entrapment is another movie where double-crossing plots and romantic attraction gets tangled up in the storyline. In the film Cinderella Man, Paul Giamatti plays a boxing manager who also understands the importance of keeping up appearances during difficult times and giving the paying customers what they want.