Strange events happen in a small village in the north of Germany during the years just before World War I, which seem to be ritual punishment. The abused and suppressed children of the villagers seem to be at the heart of this mystery.
Bennie travels to Buenos Aires to find his long-missing older brother, a once-promising writer who is now a remnant of his former self. Bennie's discovery of his brother's near-finished play might hold the answer to understanding their shared past and renewing their bond.
Francis Ford Coppola
A strange visitor in a wealthy family. He seduces the maid, the son, the mother, the daughter and finally the father before leaving a few days after. After he's gone, none of them can ... See full summary »
Dennis Clegg is in his thirties and lives in a halfway house for the mentally ill in London. Dennis, nicknamed "Spider" by his mother has been institutionalized with acute schizophrenia for some 20 years. He has never truly recovered, however, and as the story progresses we vicariously experience his increasingly fragile grip on reality. Written by
Erwin van Moll <firstname.lastname@example.org>
David Cronenberg received the screenplay from Patrick McGrath out of the blue, with a note attached saying that Ralph Fiennes was interested in playing the part of Spider. After about four pages, Cronenberg had decided that he wanted to do the film. See more »
Shadow on the road just before Spider gets the rope from the construction site. See more »
Clothes maketh the man; and the less there is of the man, the more the need of the clothes.
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My failed, boring and patronising attempt to help reveal the cinematic brilliance in this film
I've read a few of the other user comments about this film and often words and phrases like pretentious, dull, boring, lacking in entertainment are used. All fair comments, it is definitely not a film for a fantastical exciting escapist experience - however, I would suggest that a little effort on the part of the viewer will pay big dividends.
The first thing to say is that the actual plot of the film is not the main focus of the film. This is all about the madness, and subtle questions that are raised and need to be held in your mind throughout.
Every scene provides vital information, but do not forget we are seeing inside the 30 or 40 year old memories of a man who has spent most of his life in a mental asylum. I would not advise taking any scene at face value, particularly the flashbacks.
It is a challenging film and may at first seem to lack coherence, or be artsy for the sake of it. However, like the jigsaws that appear in the film in various forms it is the final pieces that are the hardest to deal with and potentially the most dangerous.
And at the end we are left with a question - is Spider's trauma the cause of his insanity, or is his insanity the cause of the trauma.
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