The legendary YES line-up of Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, Trevor Rabin, Alan White, and Tony Kaye performs in this landmark concert that's become a home video favorite! Directed by ... See full summary »
Fletcher Munson is a lethargic, passive worker for a Scientology-like self-help corporation called Eventualism. After the death of a colleague, he is promoted to the job of writing speeches for T. Azimuth Schwitters, the founder and head of the group. He uses this as an excuse to be emotionally and romantically distant from his wife, who, he discovers, is having an affair with his doppelganger, a dentist named Dr. Jeffrey Korchek. As Munson fumbles with the speech and Korchek becomes obsessed with a new patient, a psychotic exterminator named Elmo Oxygen goes around the town seducing lonely wives and taking photographs of his genitals. Written by
Gary Dickerson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I took this movie out on video because I was in the mood for something different, and on that front it certainly fulfilled my expectations. On the other hand, I was also after something entertaining, and on that front it - unfortunately - didn't, except in fragments.
The film starts with Steven Soderbergh blowing a metaphorical rasberry at the audience, standing in front of the movie screen advising (not an exact quote, just a paraphrase) - "This is the most important movie you will ever see. If you do not understand it, the fault is yours, not ours, and you should see it again and again until you do understand it, and at full price too."
It then follows a small cast of characters (some of whom can't act... or maybe that's the point?) in a series of intersecting stories... though if you can articulate the plotlines you're a better person that I! There's some sort of satire on Scientology, though as I know almost nothing about that particular cult/religion the allusions unfortunately pass me by. I guess, though, that John Travolta is unlikely to make a movie with Soderbergh anytime soon.
I did enjoy a few bits, particularly when Soderbergh is playing with the conventions of film making (like deliberately having the boom mike "accidentally" drop into shot). Favourite among these is when he has his characters talking in a kind of meta dialogue, a cinematic shorthand which comes across like the actors are reading off the film's treatment rather than script. Ie, instead of saying things like "Hi Honey, I'm home. How are the kids?" they say something along the lines of "Banal greeting to wife. Obligatory inquiry after offspring."
Unfortunately these moments are too few. This would have made an interesting short subject, but at over an hour and a half it really didn't sustain my interest.
Guess I'm a traditionalist at heart.
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