Sunday, December 24, 2006


This week's movie:

I like movies that are visually stunning and imaginative. Some people will look at this week's film, MIRRORMASK and say, "This is dumb. I can't figure out what's going on. Nothing makes sense. This doesn't fit in my mold. I can't think outside the box. I am a dunderhead." Sometimes you just have to take chances with films – otherwise how do you expand your horizons?

MIRRORMASK is not without plot. It’s not confusing or obtuse (I totally can’t believe I just used the word “obtuse”). It’s not even very strange. OK, maybe it is a little strange. Ok, maybe it’s really incredibly freaky. Is that so bad? What it is, though, is creative, dreamlike and magical.

The sets are unusual. They are meant to resemble the drawings and doodles of the main character, Helena, a 15-year old girl. A number of personal tragedies have complicated young Helena’s life. She wakes to find herself in the world of her drawing collection (her imagination). She must go on a journey of self-discovery in order to save this world and to get back to her own. I know this may sound rather juvenile, but I assure you, it ranks up there with similarly themed films as The Wizard of Oz, Labyrinth, The Dark Crystal, Alice in Wonderland, and Yellow Submarine. The stark and shifting landscape is reminiscent of paintings by both Dali and Picasso (you will have to watch this movie to see what I mean). Now you’re probably wondering how to rationally place Dali and Picasso in the same context. Well, they’re both Spaniards. They both once held a brush. When Dali and Picasso collaborated on this film, I think the conversation might have gone something like this:

Dali: Listen, my friend, if we are to work together, we must somehow divide the labor. Don’t you agree.

Picasso: Agreed. You can design all the landscapes, if you give me all the faces. I’m particularly fond of faces. I like to take faces and put the noses over here on the side, and put the mouth off into space, and eyes that quite out of proportion to the body.

Dali: Dude, that’s pretty messed up. You are one whacky SOB when it comes to faces. Were you frightened by a face when you were a child? Did a face kill your mama?

Picasso: You’re one to talk. What’s with the melting clocks and the tree shaped like a head – or is it a head shaped like a tree? It boggles the mind. Maybe I’ll make a face shaped like a tree – but with the leaves detached from the branches and it’s all like upside-down and stuff ….

Dali: Dude. Don’t weird me out. Listen, I’m going to have to insist on large floating heads, and landscapes, shaped like trees, ....... shaped like melting clocks.

Picasso: …. And you call me weird. Fine. Have your floating heads, but I want to make everything out of cubes. And the cubes make bigger cubes – which make up strange messed-up faces. Wait! What about cubes made out of faces?

Dali: Cubes? What for? Why not triangles?

Picasso: Man, you just don’t “get” me do you?

Dali: Dude, I hate to say this, but nobody has ever “gotten” you.

Picasso: Well, no one has ever gotten you either.

Dali: I should hope not. I’m totally insane.

Picasso: Amen.

Dali: Amen.

Summary: Great movie, a great time, a lot of fun, stimulating eye candy, great for the imagination, and suitable for the whole family. Pick it up this week.



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