Freestyle Release and Director Dustin Marcellino cater to an Elvis-loving audience that did not fail with entertainment or history one bit with “The Identical” which was released in theaters Sept. 5.
The film begins with Drexel Hemsley, known as The Dream, riding in a car to an unknown event. Flashbacks of his family and childhood in the 1930s was shown during the beginning half of the movie.
The Great Depression was shown during these flashbacks when Hemsley was born. It showed him having an identical twin brother, Dexter, who was given away due to money issues.
Their parents gave Dexter away to Rev. Reece and his wife, Louise Wade hoping that their son will have the best life possible, since Reece and his wife were not able to produce children of their own and because of their religious background.
The film really starts when Ryan Wade, formerly known as Dexter Hemsley’s real calling in life is to sing and entertain. However, he is held back while his unknown twin brother becomes a star. Wade spends his life emulating Hemsley in hopes of becoming a big star while following in his father’s footsteps to becoming the next reverend, much to his dismay.
The plot also focuses on how Wade has always felt a weird connection to Hemsley, as if he already knew everything about him.
There couldn’t have been a better candidate than Blake Rayne to play Wade and Hemsley with his almost identical Elvis looks. Rayne even won an Elvis impersonator contest in 1998 and made a living from impersonating him at casinos and state fairs. Even though the film is not directly related to Elvis’ life, the music, story and looks were definitely pictured and expected by the audience and Rayne delivered the whole package.
Stars Ray Liotta, Ashley Judd and Seth Green did not disappoint audiences either with their great roles. Liotta and Judd play the fiery Rev. Reece and Louise Wade, Dexter’s very religious adoptive parents who just want to raise a decent son to keep their promise to his biological parents. Even with the short times they are shown, they represent how much parents love their children and want the best for them, even if it ends up in a fight. This made it relate-able for anyone in the audience.
Green plays Wade’s best friend, Dino and even with the short times that he’s seen, he provides much of the laughter and relief for the audience.
This film definitely pulls on emotions with how much someone can relate with trying to find themselves and following their dreams. Instead of focusing purely on money and fame, a lot of the film shows the downfalls of becoming rich and trying to find oneself. This film was mostly set during the 1960s to 1970s.
This film is great for an audience of all ages as it definitely gives past events to show children while the older audience can enjoy something familiar, even though it really isn’t familiar at all.
Although some critics argue that this movie is very predictable and full of Rayne trying too hard for the musical numbers, what makes this film unique is the wanting to find independence and family feelings that everyone has been through.
This movie has a great story line and is great for people of all ages to really appreciate, the story and the history that is really behind the king of rock and roll.