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88 out of 172 people found the following review useful:
Pretentious, Overracted, and down right boring ****spoilers****, 10 February 2008

The true false profit is none other than Anderson and this cruel joke of a movie.

What "message" are we supposed to take from this film? Oil barons and false evangelists are not nice people, who would have ever guessed? Well neither are pretentious Hollywood actors and directors who think that spoon feeding us fictitious morality and screaming at the camera are somehow worthy of praise.

Oh but this "poignant" and "timely" film is somehow worthy of an Oscar? Just another example of Hollywood deigning to tell us how we should think.

The milkshake is drained, DRAINED I TELL YOU!

15 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
The Circle of Life - from ashes to ashes, from dust to dust, 22 January 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

There are three paths through the film. Each tells a small part of a larger story: fantasy, reality, and meta-physicality. In each story, there is a quest for "The Fountain of Youth" or "Eternal Life". In each instance, the quest for that goal consumes their lives, and only in the end is the basic truth of mortality revealed.

Part 1 - Modern Day/Reality - This is the one true thread of the movie. Tommy and Izzy are married, Izzy is sick with cancer, and Tommy can't accept it. Tommy spends every waking hour away from his wife, instead of enjoying the time they have together on trying to keep her alive. He is searching through science for a "cure for death" or in other words eternal life, ie, the Fountain of Youth. Izzy has come to terms with her own mortality, and has begun writing a book to help Tommy understand. The reality is that we all will die, and that there is no cure for death, but that death isn't the end... It's the beginning of forever.

Part 2 - The Book - Tommy is the conquistador trying to find "the fountain of Youth", much like he did in real life. This was Izzy's way of communicating to Tommy how futile his efforts are to save her. The book is unfinished because Izzy wants Tommy to finish the book and accept both life and death. Ultimately, the conquistador's quest for eternal life leads to his own death. It's the penultimate irony. Tommy finishes the book by the conquistador dieing and becoming one with nature, completing the cycle of his own life away dieing alone and away from his beloved queen.

Part 3 - Xibalba - This is a purely metaphysical story of yet another search for "the fountain of youth", the distant star of Xibalba rumored by some mythology to be the birthplace of the universe, but to the Mayans it was the afterlife, where we all go when we died. His quest in this story is to return the "tree of life" that represents Izzy to Xibalba to retrieve her from the afterlife. This is all just symbolic of his search in the modern day for the "cure for death". It is an intentional exaggeration, that even given a life long enough to actually travel to the far star of Xibalba, one could never reach eternal life without death. This is not actually occurring as should be obvious by the "flying bubble" and the trip through space as well as Tommy facing both Izzy and the queen from the story. It's a symbol of his journey through life and his eventual acceptance of both his wife's death and his own mortality.

Circle symbols are used throughout. The ring, the bubble, Xibalba itself is circular shaped. This is to symbolize the circle of life, from ashes to ashes, from dust to dust.

The message of the movie is that we should appreciate the lives we are given, and we should spend them cherishing those that we love, not wasting them trying to find a way to avoid death, for in only in death can we spend eternity together. From ashes to ashes, from dust to dust.