12.6.11

Brazil

..."art direction run amok at the expense of any scrutiny" is David Thomson's verdict, although he phrases it as a question, and is pretty tentative about shooting down Terry Gilliam's "unquestioned visual imagination". Well this viewer is cocksure and confident in pronouncing himself all for it. We cannot find invention this extravagant anywhere else, and we should be glad to have it.

Towards the end, I was getting a little worried that the film was stepping into Star Wars territory, but I should have been more trusting. Gilliam twists brutal satire out of those fantasies as well. Lovely Oedipus-complex complications as well. Necrophilia indeed! No fantasy, however personal, is safe. Touchy film-students may get a little queasy about the oriental samurai-emperor dueling with Pryce's angelic crusader, but again... fantasies, right? Absurd, camp, cliched and impotent.

...but what else do we have?

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