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April 03, 2007

Upper-Class Twit Of The Year: Terry Gilliam Renounced His American Citizenship Due To Bush's "Brazil"-like Persecution of Charismatic Rebel-Terrorists

Sorry for all the Python stuff. But See-Dub sent me the tip. Not a new story, but of a piece with the Jones-bashing.

Look, I think he's a terrible director and always thought so. Brazil? Fey, precious drivel. Boring. Not funny, and I don't care how many people insist to me that it is funny.

I remember being pretty psyched to see this as a kid -- I was a bit of a Python fan, as you may realized -- and sitting through it slack-jawed at the cutesy absurdism, lack of any real humor, and incoherent storyline. It's a bit like Fifth Element in the sense the script seems written in order to accomodate costumes, sets, and a production design that's already been finished, rather than the normal way of doing things in which superficial elements are crafted to agree with the script.

Baron Munchausen, Fisher King... awful, nonsensical, pretentious precious wankbait. Please, someone point out to me evidence of Gilliam's directorial gifts.

He is a good production designer, which is, you know, kind of an important part of movie-making. Especially in fantasy/sci-fi type movies, where a very big part of the suspension of disbelief comes from how plausible things look.

But he's a good production designer who has been disasterously elevated to director, a job he's just not very well suited for. Kind of like Tim Burton, but even Tim Burton looks at Gilliam's films and thinks, "Good Lord, did anyone spend any time at all putting this script into shape?"

Okay: I completely forgot he did Time Bandits. I dunno. I think more people have fond memories of this movie than actually enjoyed it. I mean -- come on. The ending is fun but honestly who the hell can watch a movie about dwarves and annoying British children?

Someone else mentions 12 Monkeys. Okay -- that movie I liked a lot. No compaints on that one.

Still, I think he's like Burton, an art director whose mistakenly been put behind the camera. Burton has blundered into making a decent movie himself, though I confess at the moment I can't think of what it was.

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posted by Ace at 09:00 PM

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