Sunday, 28 March 2010

PREVIEW: The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnasuss

The Family Panel love a good film, and 20SomethingMum and Gadget Dad enjoyed a film night watching a preview of Terry Gilliam's latest offering, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, which is released tomorrow on DVD. Here's what they thought...

We are both longtime Monty Python fans, and have enjoyed many an evening laughing out loud to such classic Python as Life of Bryan and The Holy Grail. Gilliam was a main part of the team behind the outrageousness of these and the sketches, and has gone on to be involved in other successful film projects.

This film is no exception from the weird and wonderful type he is famed for. Its pure fantasy, but for adults only- I wouldn't recommend this film for a younger audience as its quite dark in places.

The film itself first came to the public's attention due to it being the film which the hugely talented Heath Ledger was making, as the lead character, just as he died. Some film makers would have been resigned to the fact that the film died with him, after all, there aren't many films where the show has gone on after the death of its main actor or actress. 

However, the very nature of the fantastical element at the heart of this film means that with a few tweaks, it was completed. And its impossible to tell that the changes made were not meant to be there in the first place.

Gadget Dad loved the affects, and the way the scene changes from one to another with ease. The affects don't come across as camera trickery.

20somethingMum found the film hard to follow in places, mainly as it sometimes became difficult to concentrate on the storyline and the effects of the Imaginarium world as well as the suddenly changing persona's of the characters. One minute someone is a good guy, the next they suddenly change and become the villian of the piece. I had to ask Gadget Dad what had happened at the end of the film.

It's sometimes crazy, beautifully filmed, and features excellent acting from Lily Cole, Johnny Depp and Jude Law, who plays his version of the main character with humor that those who have seen his other film efforts may be surprised at- there's no evidence of the smarmy Alfie actor here.Colin Farrel's version of the Heath Ledger character is mean and nasty, something which Farrell seems to do best as the irresistible naughty guy.

Overall, a very good film, which will suck you in, make you laugh in places, and have you shocked in others. This seamlessly filmed effort is a good bet for a night in on the couch- just make sure you're not too tired to follow whats going on, and lap up the fantasy and wonder of the piece.

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