...a scientifically fool-proof yin and yang...
Bottom Line: The discussion around the science of a double feature is apparently nonexistent so I offer an unnecessary amount of thought on the subject, centered around the movies Jojo Rabbit and 1917, two movies that I see as incredibly strong films viewed alone and even stronger viewed back to back.
I'm not gonna spoil anything, I'm not gonna review or analyze these movies and I am definitely not going to pretend that I am a seasoned film buff or "cinephile". I simply geek out on good cinema pretty easily.
For context, I was home for the holidays and had access to my mom and stepdad's cox contour on demand nonsense, aka I had a bunch of movies at my disposal that I otherwise wouldn't have access to. Through my perusing, I found Jojo Rabbit and 1917, two movies with incredible critical praise that I had yet to see. I have to emphasize that I am not a war movie aficionado and I would celebrate a combination of musicals or romantic comedies in the same way, if it permitted.
I was unaware at the time, but I had paired a complete powerhouse of a double feature for myself. To endure a double feature is no easy task; sitting still and focusing can be TOUGH, even with content that I wholeheartedly enjoy (lets blame the demands of our emerging attention deficiency caused by the inherent expectation and dependency of instant gratification at the hands of modern technology). But I believe that with the proper conditions placed, a well devised double feature can totally engulf someone and take them on an emotional rollercoaster that SLAPS, harder than what would come if a single movie was watched.
The two movies are both centered around war, which ties them together and illustrates a sense of compatibility as a double feature, however they could not be more different. 1917 is a gritty WWI adventure, in line with what you might be looking for when you think of a war movie, while Jojo Rabbit is essentially a lighthearted comedy that carries a tone closer to Wes Anderson than Steven Spielberg. To place these two films next to each other reveals a relative contrast that accentuates both of the films individually, transforming two incredible stand alone movies into a scientifically fool-proof yin and yang of an experience.
Between the two movies, I think you could watch them in either order and the reward of the contrast would still stand, but I started first with Jojo Rabbit and ended with 1917, and this is the order of viewing that I recommend. Jojo is a good lighthearted note to end on, but considering that this is a double feature, 1917 is the strategic choice for second movie. If you weren't aware, 1917 is a single shot movie, as in it feels as if the camera never stops rolling; much like the banger of a movie, Birdman. This concept, aside from being incredibly impressive to pull off, instills this feeling that you are there with the characters in real time, feeling time pass the same way it would for the characters on screen. Treating Jojo as a primer of sorts and 1917 as an entree is the longevity play and suits the experience of a double feature best, because Jojo is so easy to get into and 1917 is so hard to get away from.
I understand that recommending two movies that are at the height of recent mainstream is a little tone deaf, like obviously there's something good about these movies, even if you're on the complete outside looking in. What I am highlighting is the power of these two movies in relation to one another. The art of the double feature is neglected and also, I cannot help but spend immense amount of thought on things as seemingly meaningless as the art of a double feature. Thanks for indulging me!