The Identical

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The Identical
File:The Identical poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Dustin Marcellino
Produced by Howard Klausner
Dustin Marcellino
Joe McDougall
Matt Russell
Coke Sams
Clio Tegel
Written by Howard Klausner
Starring Seth Green
Ashley Judd
Joe Pantoliano
Blake Rayne
Ray Liotta
Music by Chris Carmichael
Jerry Marcellino
Yochanan Marcellino
Cinematography Karl Walter Lindenlaub
Edited by Rick Shaine
City of Peace Films
Identical Production Company
Distributed by Freestyle Releasing
Release dates
  • April 17, 2014 (2014-04-17) (Nashville Film Festival)
  • September 5, 2014 (2014-09-05) (United States)
Running time
107 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $16 million[1]
Box office $2.8 million[2]

The Identical is a 2014 American musical drama film directed by Dustin Marcellino and written by Howard Klausner. The film was released theatrically in the United States on September 5, 2014.[2]


After William and Helen Hemsley give birth to identical twin boys, the brothers are unknowingly separated at birth during the Great Depression. Drexel Hemsley becomes an iconic 1950s rock and roll star, while Ryan Wade, born Dexter Hemsley, struggles to balance his love for music and pleasing his father. The Reverend Reece Wade and his wife, Louise, are sure their adopted son has been gifted and called by God to be a preacher. But Ryan challenges his parents' vision for his life, and unflinchingly chooses to launch his own music career with his best friend, Dino. Encouraged by his wife, Jenny, and employer, Avi, Ryan embarks on an unpredictable, provocative path – performing the legendary music of Drexel Hemsley in sold out venues all across the country. As the brothers' destinies tragically collide, Ryan discovers that Drexel is his twin brother.



Critical reception

The Identical was universally panned by critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a rating of 6%, based on 62 reviews, with an average rating of 3.3/10. The site's consensus states: "With nearly every element ringing as hollow as the ersatz Elvis at the story's core, The Identical looks destined for a bright future on the ironic viewing circuit."[3] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 25 out of 100, based on 25 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[4]

Randy Cordova, from The Arizona Republic, wrote, "Elvis Presley made some bad movies, but let's give the King his due: He never made anything as outright awful as The Identical."[5]

Quad-City Times film critic Linda Cook wrote, "Fans of bad movies, please note: This is a must-see. This is so bad it must be seen to be believed — “Showgirls” bad, a vision that slowly goes wrong, then terribly wrong, then hits disaster levels. In a sense, it’s an Ed Wood-ian exercise in wrong."[6]

In response to the negative reception, the film's Twitter page underwent a campaign to boost the fan ratings on both Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb, including putting the first 15 minutes of the film online for free.[7][8]

Box office

The Identical grossed $1.6 million in its opening weekend, finishing in 12th place at the box office.[2]

The film was pulled from theaters after only playing for three weeks, and grossed $2.8 million during its brief life in theaters, far below its $16 million budget, making it a box office bomb.


  1. Rebecca Ford. "'The Identical' Faith-Friendly Marketing Campaign: Churches, NASCAR and the Emmys". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 7, 2015. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "The Identical (2014) - Box Office Mojo". Retrieved February 7, 2015. 
  3. "The Identical". September 5, 2014. Retrieved April 6, 2016. 
  4. "The Identical". Metacritic. Retrieved February 7, 2015. 
  5. Cordova, Randy (4 September 2014). "Review: 'The Identical' a hound dog of a film". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 16 October 2014. 
  6. Cook, Linda (5 September 2014). "For awful movies, nothing matches 'Identical'". Quad-City Times. Retrieved 16 October 2014. 
  7. "Christian filmmakers offer unprecedented dare". WND. Retrieved February 7, 2015. 
  8. "The Identical Movie". Retrieved February 7, 2015. 

External links