A boy stands on a station platform as a train is about to leave. Should he go with his mother or stay with his father? Infinite possibilities arise from this decision. As long as he doesn't choose, anything is possible.
A ballet dancer wins the lead in "Swan Lake" and is perfect for the role of the delicate White Swan - Princess Odette - but slowly loses her mind as she becomes more and more like Odile, the Black Swan.
Three stories - one each from the past, present, and future - about men in pursuit of eternity with their love. A conquistador in Mayan country searches for the tree of life to free his captive queen; a medical researcher, working with various trees, looks for a cure that will save his dying wife; a space traveler, traveling with an aged tree encapsulated within a bubble, moves toward a dying star that's wrapped in a nebula; he seeks eternity with his love. The stories intersect and parallel; the quests fail and succeed. Written by
Beautiful and probably one of the best movies of the century
...and here I shall attempt to review what will one day be a classic in the hopefully near future. The Fountain is many things. It's a touching film. It's not long, though, clocking in at around 80 or 90 minutes, but it does manage to pack in enough emotion to out-do every single lame, candy-assed Hollywood romance ever created, or almost. More movies should cut down their running times like this; because there is not a wasted moment in The Fountain from start to finish, despite the movie still moving at an gregariously slow pace. You won't find any blitzed, seizure-inducing cut-and-paste editing scenes here, and there are no epic explosions and battle scenes either. What you will find, though, is an entire treasure trove of realistic passion and jaw-dropping emotion, and that's the strong point of this movie. Nothing here feels contrived or derivative or fake at all - this is a story of a woman with a lot of love in her heart and a passion for life in general, and a man who would do anything to preserve the same love for all eternity. That's the Fountain.
The Fountain is a simple movie. While at first it's repertoire of lazily abstract images and slow plot construction may seem intimidating and might even turn off the average moviegoer, a deeper voyage into The Fountain's layers reveals something not hard to comprehend at all. I mean, honestly, this film is a love story at it's core, there are no mind-bending plot twists and secret meanings. It's just a passionate, intricately woven romance about how far a man would go to let his love live on forever. If you're looking for super slick plot twists and drama, then look elsewhere, because The Fountain is not your typical modern flick at all. As I said, average moviegoers probably won't be able to get into this one. It's just too abstract and weird, and I won't blame anyone for disliking it on the basis of it's obvious inaccessibility. But regardless, the shimmering majesty of this movie is evident to those who are willing to try and find it. It's clear after the film sinks in - The Fountain is a straightforward and simple film disguised by multiple layers of artistic refinement and glorious imagery. Oh, it's not all clear cut for you, there is one other sticky point for some people - the fact that The Fountain takes place in three different time-spans all at once, weaving them together into a rich, complex tapestry of master-class storytelling. Yet somehow, despite the winding complexity of it all, The Fountain remains a pretty basic story once you get your head around it's eccentricities. Simplicity and complexity go hand in hand here to create a plethora of beauty and sorrow, a perfect oxymoron.
There's a very deep, broad contrast between the beautiful simplicity of the film's plot line and the absolutely jaw-dropping grandeur of the special effects and graphics utilized here. The directing here is through the roof, and the cinematography on display here is probably amongst the five or six best from any movie I've ever seen, if not the very top of the goddamn list. Just watch the last few minutes of the movie, and you'll understand. One of the things I really love about The Fountain is that it's beautiful and touching without trying to be anything it isn't. It's an honest film, and it does everything it wants to do effortlessly and flawlessly, with graceful, sweeping movements that etch a stunning caricature of rich, luscious aesthetics into an otherwise simple story. Marvelous.
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