The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009)

It had to happen.  Sooner or later, Terry Gilliam was going to make a movie that I enjoyed.  Imaginarium is what I expected it to be, but also a bit more, considering I didn’t hate or dismiss it as pretentious drug twaddle (how weird is it that “twaddle” is apparently a real word?).  I’m not sure how much of my liking it was due to seeing how much of The Joker was in Heath Ledger’s final performance (he died during the filming), or how much I was drooling over Lily Cole.  Something to ruminate upon.

Either way, Imaginarium seems to have more heart in it than most Gilliam movies which seem to concentrate more on how much “fucked-upness” are in them.  There is a grounded reality to the movie, but also an otherworldly-ness that is well-balanced.  I’m thinking the Editor, Mick Audsley, has much to do with that, probably slapping Gilliam a lot and saying “let me handle it!”  I’ve just read that Gilliam thought of the Parnassus character as himself, which I can totally see, and see why this movie appears to be more well made than most Gilliam movies.

All snark aside, I think this film is mostly a labour of love.  From Gilliam’s semi-autobiographical stance to wanting to honour Ledger, it seems less hell-bent on being crazy than a usual Gilliam picture.  I sincerely enjoyed it, and I will recommend it to others, despite the presence of one Andrew Garfield.

3.5 / 5


About SkoochXC
Long-time blogger, Canadian, cine-snark-aphile, Tweeter and generally lonely hearted guy.

3 Responses to The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009)

  1. Laura says:

    What’s wrong with Andrew Garfield? D:

    • SkoochXC says:

      I am not a fan of his at all. Every performance just seems to reek of douchebaggery, no matter what he’s doing. There’s just something about him – like the sound of a crying baby or a cat – that instantly sets me on edge.

      • Laura says:

        Wow, interesting you feel that way! I actually find him to be the most natural and versatile actor I’ve ever seen!

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