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Security is tight in the personnel department at software giant DigiCorp as Morgan Sullivan (Northam) arrives for interview. They have to be sure he's the man he says he is, because they're going to ask him to be somebody else, an industrial spy prowling the conference rooms of corporate America. That's okay with Morgan, who longs to escape his humdrum suburban lot. His undercover identity as Jack Thursby is about to deliver big time on his fantasies of adventure, but not in the way he expected. Best not to reveal much more about this trim near-future thriller from the director of Cube, as it delights in wrong-footing us at the earliest opportunity. As events develop into a series of scrapes resembling a cyber-tech North by Northwest, Sullivan's own increasingly off balance perspective sharpens the intrigue as alluring femme fatale Rita (Liu, note perfect) promises either romantic salvation or seductive doom. Brian King's twisty screenplay never falters, yet it's the focused direction and Northam's intelligently modulated central performance that keep the film on track. It's exciting, inventive and wonderfully wry when it needs to be, while the smart use of Toronto locations and an adeptly controlled palette (watch out for the colours invading Sullivan's monochrome existence) show that a fantasy landscape needn't break the bank. All this and a notion to ponder on the way home: if you could become someone else, might it still be the same old you in a different wrapper? With so much to enjoy, this modestly proportioned production positively shames mega-budget Hollywood.

Release details

Duration: 95 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Vincenzo Natali
Screenwriter: Brian King
Cast: Jeremy Northam
Lucy Liu
Nigel Bennett
Timothy Webber
David Hewlett
Kari Matchett
Kristina Nicoll
Joseph Scoren
Stephen Brown
Arnold Pinnock
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