Movie Reviews The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus
Terry Gilliam has come a long way since the late '60s, when he admittedly became one of the original copyright infringers by cutting out photos and pictures from magazines and newspapers and using them inventively as graphic inserts in the BBC's Monty Python's Flying Circus without permission. Gilliam has now let his imagination loose in a movie about a traveling circus act called The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus . Although the film co-stars Heath Ledger in his final performance (he died while the film was still in production), it is not the performances or the script that captured the attention of audiences who previewed it at the Cannes Film Festival today (Friday), where it was shown out of competition. Reviewing the film for the BBC, Emma Jones commented, "There's no doubt that the imaginary world [Gilliam has] created is awe-inspiring, but it's ultimately designed for an art house audience. The critics at Cannes loved it, but most cinema-goers would need to see it more than once to start untangling the multiple themes." Peter Bradshaw wrote in Britain's Guardian newspaper "When Gilliam shoots off into his surreal wonderland, his film has a kind of helium-filled jollity and spectacle. ... a reminder of the old Python magic. But the film's convoluted curlicues are tiring, insisting too loudly on how 'imaginative' everything is. And when it descends into the real world -- Lucy out of the sky without diamonds, as it were -- the film can frankly be a bit ho-hum."