Eventually after what has felt like forever, Heath Ledger’s final role (although uncompleted) has eventually been released and I have just returned from a showing tonight (edit. I started the review when I first got back). I really have no idea where to start in this review as there really is so much to cover and say about this movie. I really do think it will need a few viewings to really see everything it has to offer as so much goes on and quite a lot of information to take in for each of the characters stories.
Dr Parnassus (Christopher Plummer) barged his soul with the devil, Mr Nick (Tom Waits) at first to become immortal. But then he done it again to become mortal again so he could be with the woman he really wanted, this came at the price of any children he had when they turned 16 would have to be given to the devil. However, three days before this was due to occur. Dr Parnassus made a new deal in a bid to keep his daughter, first to five souls wins between himself and Mr Nick.
Valentina (Lily Cole) the daughter of Dr Parnassus used to star in the show along with Percy (Verne Troyer) and Anton (Andrew Garfield). The show is to get people to go into the imaginarium which is through a mirror, upon going into the mirror the person sees what they want to see and always end up with two choices good or bad to what they want to do. If their soul will go to good or evil. The stage for the show is a very interesting wooden vehicle which is horse driven and they all live on it as well. After a show one day, they see a shadow of a man dancing on water but then realise that someone is hanging off the bridge below. So they rescue him and he cannot at first remember his name, Tony (Heath Ledger).
It is well known that Johnny Depp, Jude Law and then Colin Farrell all are Tony as well. This occurs on three different occasions when he goes through the mirror and enters the imaginarium. This actually works out so well, the many faces of Tony when he passes into his imagination. Will he always make the correct choices? Tony ends up really helping out Dr Parnassus, changing his show and really helping out with the five souls the Dr needs in order to win and keep his daughter. Valentina has a secret of her own that she really wants to run away and have a life of her own, in a proper house with a husband and to have children. Anton is so obviously in love with her, but she wants Tony when he shows up. I do not want to spoil the ending or what happens when Tony goes into the imaginarium as it all really could go a few different ways.
Performances really were to a high standard in this movie. Christopher Plummer as Dr Parnassus, although I still cannot help but think Captain Von Trapp whenever I see him was very good in this movie. Lily Cole, who I have to admit that I did not know who she was and that she was a model put in a good performance. I thought Andrew Garfield was very good as Anton as well. Verne Troyer added some comedy value. Now onto the very important part of Tony and his many faces . . . So in the “real” world it is Heath Ledger in what was his final performance as this was the movie he was filming when he died. He really was so charming, handsome and just amazing, and still such a shame that he passed away so young. It was difficult to watch thinking this was what he was doing when he died. But he was so fantastic. The first transformation was Johnny Depp, who was his usual brilliant self in the brief 3/4 minutes in which he was on screen. The second transformation brings Jude Law into the part, who pretty much smiles and grins throughout his segment, which contains extremely tall ladders. The third and final transformation, Colin Farrell into which was probably the longest segment. He seemed to be trying to hide his Irish accent, but was still good.
Being female I did just have to point out after watching the film that I could not really pick four better looking actors to all play the same character and actually all pull it off. Yes, that may sound shallow but hey I am human after all and I think that is something every female who watches this movie will notice and pick up on, as they all look fantastic in that white suit.
Overall, with the whole storyline, I thought it was such a fantastic concept of being able to go into a mirror and let your imagination take over. You could go into the mirror hundreds and thousands of times and it could be different each time you go in and I really liked that idea and I was wondering where my imagination would take me. I think that was possibly an aim of this movie to get people thinking and imagining things. Also, that everyone had two choices when they were inside the mirror one path leading to good, and the other leading to bad I thought also related to that in life you have to make so many choices, and at times they take you to different places and change things so much. I dont know if I was thinking about it too much and looking too deep, but I felt that was what you really had to do with this movie, get lost in it and wonder what you would do. Dont get me wrong though this movie is very random and off the wall at times, but I think that was part of its charm for me at least. It’s definitely a movie I want to see again rather soon, and curious to how others found it.
The credits started with, “A film from Heath and Friends” which I thought was a nice touch, but also so sad that now its all really over.