Monday, July 8, 2013

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

This movie is, hands down, the weirdest thing I've seen in my life.
The plot is this: Somehow, for some reason, Doctor Parnassus said that he would give the devil his daughter if he didn't succeed in taking five souls (Or so) to heaven via his imaginarium by a certain point in time. They explain why, and what led up to this via flashbacks later in the movie, but it's put together so strangely that I could barely understand it while I was watching it! In addition: Some of the plot ISN'T explained. For instance: Who is Heath Ledger's/Johnny Depp's/Colin Farrel's/Jude Law's character and why was he hanging from a rope on the edge of a bridge in London? We know his name, but even after re-reading the Wikipedia page TWICE after seeing the movie I can't begin to fathom what the point of his character was, or why he was there. It also stars a pre-The Amazing Spider-Man Andrew Garfield, and from the few of his pre-Spider-Man roles I know of I liked his performance in Doctor Who best (Less a dig on him and more a dig on this particular movie) After a while, more of the story is told by flashbacks to the beginning of Dr Parnassus's life. It only gets stranger from there on. The inside of The Imaginarium is bigger on the inside, and not in the harmless way of The TARDIS, it creates a world that (From what I hear) wouldn't seem that out of place in Silent Hill (Minus a few totally screwed-up things and plus a few incomprehensibly crazy ones). Whoever was designing the set-pieces in there must have been on some kind of hallucinogenic drugs, because everything about it seems like something someone would experience if they were using acid. (Which probably explains the opening sequence of Beetles Rockband and most of their songs) In order to compensate for Heath Ledger dying during production of the movie they used Johnny Depp, Colin Farrel, and Jude Law in the different dimensions of the Imaginarium. This is probably supposed to reflect that the character is a con-man, but until the end it just caused me to wonder why they kept changing actors. (This was before I knew Heath Ledger was in it, I really didn't pay much attention to the cast) I actually debated whether or not I was going to keep watching this movie, but I figured I could just pile more stuff onto it. The ending makes no sense, after the  Everything about the movie seems like someone would enjoy it more if they were extremely high, and aside from the art and set-pieces, there's nothing really of interest in the movie unless you like weird stuff. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus is a freaky and un-nerving ride from start to finish, and I only recommend watching it if you need to waste 123 minutes, although there are better ways to spend two hours. Maybe you could check out my YouTube channel instead?
All in all, I didn't really like this movie. I wouldn't say it's terrible, but it's not that great. I give it a 2.4* rating.
By the way, I thought I had scheduled this for yesterday, but I apparently didn't hit publish....