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Mister Lonely (2007)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama | 14 March 2008 (UK)
In Paris, a young American who works as a Michael Jackson lookalike meets Marilyn Monroe, who invites him to her commune in Scotland, where she lives with Charlie Chaplin and her daughter, Shirley Temple.

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Cast

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Jason Pennycooke ...
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Melita Morgan ...
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Storyline

In Paris, a young American who works as a Michael Jackson lookalike meets Marilyn Monroe, who invites him to her commune in Scotland, where she lives with Charlie Chaplin and her daughter, Shirley Temple.

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Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

14 March 2008 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Imitátorok  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$16,769 (USA) (2 May 2008)

Gross:

$165,831 (USA) (1 August 2008)
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2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Melita Morgan who plays Madonna designed her own costume for the film. See more »

Goofs

The shape of the nuns' parachutes are visible as they are falling from the plane. See more »

Quotes

Buckwheat: I love women, they're hot, they make me sweat. I love chickens.I love their wings, like breasts. If you combine chicken with a woman's breasts, you get chicken breasts. I like chicken breast, chicken breast is nice and hot! If it was up to me, I'd make the world naked woman and naked chickens. That's hot, yeah!
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Connections

Featured in Brows Held High: Spring Breakers (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Door of Our Home
Performed by Goldmund
Licensed courtesy of Type Recordings
Written by Keith Kenniff
Published by Copyright Control
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User Reviews

 
That's Show Business, Folks.
23 October 2008 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Mister Lonely (2008) ****

Well, it's been 8 years since Harmony Korine made a film. The last time we saw him was in Julien Donkey-Boy, before that Gummo. Both those movies passed through eyes of which the majority had no understanding. Roger Ebert, in his review of Julien Donkey Boy, referred to Korine as on a list with such names as Herzog, Cassevetes, Tarkovsky, Brakhage, Godard, etc. The reason: because he smashed the boundaries of how a conventional filmmaker would have told such tales. He also pointed out the near death of the underground film scene. There once was a time when if you were a film buff, you sought out films like these, and sat willfully in old one screen cinemas. And you were not alone: It's hard to believe now, but yes people lined up around street corners to see the Godard's or Tarkovsky's. Now those lineups are reserved for the likes of Pirates of the Caribbean and Spiderman.

That kind of film buff is now a rare breed. We exist, and gleefully buy our tickets and run to the theatres, but we're no longer shoulder to shoulder or lined up around the corner. Take as an anecdote a few trips made to my local film festival. I saw a Bela Tarr film, and in my idealism rushed to get there early so i could get a seat. Though later I realized that the auditorium was only maybe half full, at best, in one of the smallest auditoriums in the city. When I first saw Mister Lonely, it was of course the same.

But I digress. The point? Mister Lonely, like Korine's two previous directorial outings, dare to be different, dare to be bold, and so are destined to go unappreciated. Even Ebert, who praised Julien Donkey-Boy only gave the film 2 stars - though he did wish he could give a 2 star positive review. The problem with making a film like Mister Lonely is that its so odd that everyone gets caught up on the oddity. A common gripe: "sure its original, but what's the point?" Mister Lonely, written by Korine and his brother Avi, sets its sights on the world of celebrity impersonators. Mainly are Michael Jackson (Luna) and Marilyn Monroe (Morton). He meets her while working a bizarre gig at an old folks home, as they sit half amused, half catatonic. She invites him back to her commune in the highlands of Scotland, inhabited by their kind: Abe Lincoln, James Dean, Madonna, the Queen, the Pope, Little Red Riding Hood, the Three Stooges, and Charlie Chaplin and Shirley Temple, who are her husband and daughter, respectively of course. They live in their own world. The only thing that ties them to the real world is a flock of sheep. To them, their world seems as perfect as they want it to be, for they are the truest souls of all as they cloak themselves in the lives and manners of others. Or so that is their claim. To showcase their talents and philosophy, they build a theatre where they will put on shows for themselves, and the townsfolk.

Although their is light heartedness and tender sweetness, something else seems to be sinister. Charlie Chaplin is an egomaniac, and emotionally abusive towards his wife, Marylin Monroe. To everyone else he is courteous and, well, Chaplin-esquire. She tells him that sometimes he looks more like Hitler than Chaplin.

Though the film retains its tenderness, its big shift comes with the slaughter of sheep. They are infected, and even the living must be killed. All gather round as Larry, Curly and Moe pull the triggers of double barrel shotguns. In a way, their fantasy reality is not so much shattered, but breached.

Punctuating this is a story about flying nuns, who believe that they can jump from the priests plane (played with absurd hilarity by Werner Herzog himself) and land safely on the ground below.

Although Korine has always found the beauty in his own chaos, Mister Lonely is a much more aesthetic film than his others. It has a certain level of visual prestige that few others would even strive to. Many images are quite simply breathtaking. The sequences of Nuns, accentuated in their sky blue robes against the sky blue skies are some of my favorite in any film.

And, yes, there is a point. What is it? I think I know, though I'm positive its up to some personal interpretation. And for that matter, a review is not the proper place for such a discussion. This much can be said though, its poignant, touching, and genuinely heartbreaking and life affirming at once.

Films like this exist to be based solely upon their own merit. Even though Mister Lonely has some thematic similarities to, say, Sweet Movie (which Korine has said was an influence on his career), it is still something all together unique.The problem with films like Mister Lonely, though, is that they must be taken totally literally or not at all, or maybe both at the same time. That is a lot to ask of an audience, especially now. But, I ask, is that not the point of good film-making? And Besides, where else can you see the Pope sleeping with the Queen? The Three Stooges killing sheep? Michal Jackson play ping pong with Charlie Chaplin? Or maybe James Dean hang out by a swing with Madonna and Shirley Temple? Where I ask you, where!


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