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The Death of Salvador Dali (2005)

 |  Short  |  12 March 2005 (USA)
7.2
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"The Death of Salvador Dali" brings the paranoiac, flamboyant Dali into the office and head-space of an unsuspecting Sigmund Freud. When Salvador seeks Freud's assistance to inject madness ... See full summary »

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Title: The Death of Salvador Dali (2005)

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In 1934, Salvador Dali was put on trial by his fellow Surrealists for offences against the movement. This surreal comedy-drama examines the trial and the events that led up to it.

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"The Death of Salvador Dali" brings the paranoiac, flamboyant Dali into the office and head-space of an unsuspecting Sigmund Freud. When Salvador seeks Freud's assistance to inject madness into his art, tables are turned, student becomes teacher, and doctor becomes patient. Unwittingly subjected to chaos, deception, and guns, Freud and madness itself become mere ingredients in Dali's grand, secret agenda. Written by Delaney Bishop

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"I am DALI!"
13 May 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This short film, The Death of Salvador Dali, was made not only for admirers of the quintessential surrealist (maybe too for Freud 'fans' if that's not too obtuse a description), but those who are newcomers to the work of Dali or don't know much about the surrealist movement (I have to be reminded who Andre Breton was to my embarrassment) it's still a funny and wonderfully and precisely bizarre little movie. It poses the question: could Freud make Dali go mad, which is what Dali needs as opposed to being "normal" and not producing the same output he usually does? For Dali, life slips in and out of dream as though he were asleep all the time. For Freud, madness can be cured but he's indignant to the suggestion that he can spur on madness if he can also cure it. For everyone else in here... you just have to see it for yourself.

This is funny stuff, and thankfully without much of a message, at all, except maybe to embrace your inner weird. There's also the good narrative tactic by the filmmaker to not make sense of what is real or not, a trademark of the co-author of Un chien Andalou and L'Age D'Or. One moment we think someone's just shown up, the next Dali's on the couch, or again drawing with his left hand, or even... seeing his old buddy Luis Bunuel in a desert? It also concerns itself with death repeatedly, in one of the most uproarious motifs I've seen in a short film in a while, and it never goes too far into being something to take seriously. That said, it's more accessible to admirers or those who know who these people are. The good news is that it's the best antidote for the flawed, barely two-dimensional Little Ashes feature that was just released. Pattinson may have done a decent job, but he's no match for Salvador Benavides.


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