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In a future where your robotic double, known as your Doppelsynth, goes to work in your stead, humans are rapidly approaching obsolescence. George, a struggling writer holding out hopes that the bots won’t take over literature for another decade, is also a very sexually frustrated human being. Luckily there’s an underground industry of Doppels reprogrammed for just the kind of fun he’s looking for. But things don’t go as planned when the Doppel in his bed malfunctions. Hiding the illegal lovebot before his own Doppel comes home, George must now make the call of shame to the broken bot’s owner. When she comes to collect her property, the awkward meeting results in improbable but undeniable sparks flying between them.

Starring: Gibson Frazier, and Annapurna Sriram

Directed and written by: Sofian Khan

A Fantasia International Film Festival Review

  “Doppelbänger” starts right off with a bang, or some banging going on. George (Gibson Frazier) is having sex with a robot, and it’s gotten so good that the robot malfunctions. Of course this isn’t good for him because his night of fun is over, but soon enough puts him in an awkward situation. He has to call the owner of the robot, Cecilia (Annapurna Sriram), to come over and fix it. It might take a second or two to realize that he’s basically calling the person he was just having sex with. Yes, that’s going to set up an interesting situation, but he’s got something else to worry about.
  The reason he’s home to begin with is that he has a doppelgänger robot of his own, who has gone to work for him. Unexpectedly this robot has finished work early, and come home to recharge. It pretends not to notice what’s going on, especially when Cecilia gets there, but it does and now must do what it's programmed to do. It looks like George’s robot problems have just begun.
  A lot of shorts are stand alone films, but then there the ones that are made in hopes of something bigger like a series. “Doppelbänger” is definitely a great set up for a larger series. It creates an intriguing period of time where people are being replaced robots leaving the question of what are humans are supposed to do in the meantime. George is hoping to hold onto his past life, but his mistake in the bedroom may have cost him. On the other hand, it also introduced him to someone who can relate to his struggles in a new world. His robot adds a nice touch of creepiness to the story, but the situation created by the opening scene is gold. The audience will definitely be left wanting to know what happens next!


Doppelbänger” is playing as part of the Fantasia 2020 Virtual Festival.


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