Double Take

A double take is when the bad guys beset you and the good guys rush in, an old ploy. The supreme, final joke is a pen that summons military forces in thirty seconds.

Equal to this is the “rogue” FBI agent driving across the river to Mexico past “an invasion of Texas” going the other way, the camera almost horizontal on the departing bank watches his car move slowly in water up to the door handles and then drive down and disappear. He pops up in a similar shot, the camera low on the water sees his passenger surface in the background, a little white dog belonging to Governor Quintana of Chihuahua, assassinated because he didn’t want to be “part of our happy little family” of corrupt U.S. agents and an investment banker working for a Mexican drug merchant.

The mechanism is a beautiful feint, a large sum is flagrantly moved to set the ball rolling, the merchant’s funds have been frozen, he precipitates a catastrophe to turn in his accomplices and regain liquidity.

Another investment banker is set up to expose the money laundry, stumbles on the FBI agent, who is framed for the assassination, and so forth in a sequence of gags illuminating the material.

The power of the pen is demonstrated by Dali in Impressions de la Haute Mongolie (hommage Raymond Roussel). Jim Phelps has a useful device similarly disguised in an episode of Mission: Impossible.