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Fantasia 2020

[Fantasia] ‘Doppelbanger’ review: More than just a sexbot flick

Clever storytelling

Online dating apps are a normal part of today’s world. They are a natural progression of blind dates which in turn stem from personal ads. The sex trade entered the digital world a long time ago. Porn is ubiquitous with the internet, but even then, the world’s oldest profession has continued to update.

Doppelbanger is a short playing at the Fantasia Film Festival. The science fiction story is about a man named George. When an electronic “dopple” he paid to have sex with malfunctions, it opens up a new world of possibilities.

The plot may seem to be about sex, but that is more about getting the plot moving. Through conversation, Dopplebanger slyly gets across its true theme: control. There are some familiar science fiction tropes – the robot masters do not seem benevolent – but they are used cleverly.

Doppelbanger is an excellent short film that focuses on storytelling. The writing is multilayered and will reward audiences that pay attention. Science fiction has always been a haven for strong writing and writer Sofian Khan is a wonderful addition.

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