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Another reader chimes in on Aronofsky's THE FOUNTAIN!!! It's a glowy super-in-love review!!!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here! Goddamn me for missing the Fantastic Fest screening of this movie. I'm so jonesing for this movie and now I'm doomed to months of torturous waiting. What the hell was I thinking? Enjoy this completely head over heels in love review from "Primevortex," who saw it at the Vancouver FF (a really good fest, actually. In 2001 I attended and it was there that I first stumbled upon the genius of Takashi Miike)... Have at it!!!

I just came from watching a finished, full version of Aronofsky’s ‘The Fountain’ at the Vancouver film festival. Let me just start by saying that this is not a film everyone will like and even people that are looking forward to it might not like what they see. But those who expect a mental fuck job and are keen to let layers reveal themselves to them will be rewarded, nay- richly rewarded and maybe like me, you might walk out of the theater quivering a bit with realizations and the meaning of it all and what it means to you personally. I really don’t know what Warner Bros makes of this and how they are going to market it, so far they have been cautious. The teaser and trailer reveal the bare basics, not enough to let you know what the story is but perhaps an idea. The film is at its core, a love story and a sci fi drama. I’ve read somewhere that it is being called a 2001 with heart. Aronofsky delves into somewhat the same, if a bit different cerebral territory of PI and he even uses different stylistic elements to propel the narrative, layering and adding subtle visual clues to give us an idea of things as they are happening. You will see a lot of hidden clues laid throughout. There are certain parts, when they click as you realize what’s happening on screen, sends shivers down your back, and at least to me it did. Concept, theme and imagery are so well done in this movie that it should at least be nominated for Editing in the big one. All the rumors you heard about the development hell, the many years Aronofsky spent thinking and working on this movie are all worth it. A movie seldom comes that manages to answer or state an eternal human truth in a mystical fashion which also happens to be deeply spiritual. For a low budget of $35 mil (down from the original scheduled $75 mil) some of the effects, primarily in the future sequences are stunning and actually add to the narrative rather than be there for a cool-bang-action reason. The story is complex, but in a way many nudges and hints are given for the mass audience to piece it all together. In fact, I would say some of the nudges and hints are spoon fed. That is the only one weakness I would find in this movie. Sometimes too much of a ‘comfort wrap up’ for my liking. It’s surely worth a second viewing if not multiple ones to let the intensity of meaning settle in. The Fountain has quite a polar reaction one feels to, say –Requiem. Where that movie makes you feel horrible at the end, The Fountain makes you feel enlightened to a realization akin to one coming out of a trance or meditative state. This is, without a doubt, one of if not the best piece of work Jackman has done. To watch him carry this film is pure pleasure. I can never again see him only as Wolvie anymore. Rachel Weisz is stunning as always but for me she could have been better. Mind you, it’s Jackman we are watching mostly and he gets the best scenes. A surprise was seeing Ellen Burstyn in this film. I didn’t know she was in it. Burstyn is good with the short amount of work given to her here. As is, Ethan Suplee and Sean Patrick Thomas. There isn’t enough to gush about this movie. The cinematography, at times is breathtaking and the score by Kronos Quartet is haunting. Clint Mansell deserves top nods though it isn’t Requiem quality. I cannot wait to see more films made by Aronofsky. If this is the type of stuff he plans to expand on or make movies like these, then some of us are going to have a very wet cinematic dream for some time to come. I think most people have to see this film. I can’t say any more then that. Harry, if you decide to use this, call me Primevortex
Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 12, 2006, 5:57 p.m. CST

    So is this going to have space lasers or what?

    by CreasyBear

    .

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 6:04 p.m. CST

    Fountain is Love

    by DOGSOUP

    Along with Pans Labrynth and NEXTWAVE!

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 6:23 p.m. CST

    gushing fountain = flaming optimus

    by p4ld3w

    what am i saying??? Cannot wait for this, as Requiem seems so long ago... Good to hear Jackman is a proper actor, I saw him on the Jonathon Ross Show in the UK and he comes across a lot better than his roles (ie: wolverine) allow. He's like the anti-Russell Crowe!!!

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 6:49 p.m. CST

    Isn't a tree a PLANT

    by I Own You

    Oh, someone had to say it

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 7:18 p.m. CST

    I was looking forward to PI.

    by Sir HickoryBeans McCrackin

    ..and then I watched it. I felt like I got kicked in was locked in a room for 3 hours while repeatedly getting kicked in the nuts by a group of beatniks and artfags. In conclusion, Robin Williams is not funny.

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 7:20 p.m. CST

    see?

    by Sir HickoryBeans McCrackin

    that shit movie destroyed the part of my brain which controls typing.

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 9:04 p.m. CST

    can't wait

    by Matt323

    both trailers looked aewsome, can't wait, would be VERY surpised if this was bad (even if this is a plant review)

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 9:20 p.m. CST

    I loved 'Requiem'

    by Roy Neary

    But this looks Booooooring. And sorry but so does Children of Men.

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 9:31 p.m. CST

    It's gonna be a "love it or hate it" movie

    by SanityKaos

    I'll probably love it. I told so many people about Requiem and either they get it or they go, "Oh, that was just awfull!!!" Anyway, I'm glad Fountain finally got made. For awhile it looked pretty grim.

  • Oct. 12, 2006, 11:15 p.m. CST

    Saw it at FANTASTIC FEST

    by the beef

    It is exactly a love it or hate it. I loved it, immensely. Many will find it boring. Others cheesy. Some, self-indulgent. I didn't see any of that. Either you will feel for the characters or you won't. A woman came out and I heard her say she thought Jackman and Weisz had absolutely no chemistry (I thought it was a pun considering what was used to make the movie), and I could see where she was coming from but I think there is a reason why their chemistry seems a little, off. I could just be making excuses for it though. I'll just leave it at that I agree with the above review. This is a movie I'll be revisiting constantly for years to come.

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 1:39 a.m. CST

    ver too and......

    by HammeredGuy

    this movie sucked! It got booed at Venice i read, after seeing it. I booed internally the whole time. I was with 3 other people who i consider artsy enough and was relieved at the end when they said they all hated it! In 3 words, this movie can be summed up as VISUALLY STUNNING, INCOHERENT. Hugh Jackman whispers the whole time for some reason, and scenes are repetetive. There is one scene where Hugh stabs the tree and white gooey liquid comes and Hugh rubs it all over his lips and it ends up looking like Vincent Gallo blew a load on his face. You can't help but laugh when it's trying to be so serious. How could they not have seen that knobgoblin scene would end up looking like that!

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 1:40 a.m. CST

    That title was supposed to read...

    by HammeredGuy

    I saw it in Vancouver too and....

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 2:29 a.m. CST

    hard to imagine

    by BadMrWonka

    that a dude named "HammeredGuy" and his "artsy" friends were actually "at" the Venice screening (go "fuck" yourselves). for my part, Aronofsky has at LEAST (and in my mind it's been much more) been innovative, visually and narratively speaking. this movie looks amazing, and if you are a whiney talkbacker that's shitting on it, so be it, but let's hear about your new release next year that is going to break new ground. sprayign diarrhea on innovation doesn't make you an artist. go cry alone...this movie is going to be stunning...

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 2:29 a.m. CST

    bah

    by BadMrWonka

    Venice, Vancouver...trolling is trolling...

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 3:07 p.m. CST

    Nope, not a Plant and thanks Quint.

    by Prime vortex

    No Creasybear, no space lasers and Matt 323, not a plant review. I'd been waiting months to see this and accidentally found a listing for it at the fest and snapped up ticks. Yeah this is pretty much a love it or hate it movie. No middle ground. I suspect that the defenders of this movie in the following months will be staunch and rather overbearing. When it ended, there was very hesitation-clapping as if not many got it but myself and another group were clapping generously. I can guarantee you have not seen a film like this before even if you hate it or love it.

  • Oct. 13, 2006, 3:12 p.m. CST

    **SPOILERS** forgot to add

    by Prime vortex

    forgot to add this part to the review. spoiler haters don't read on otherwse the movie is slightly done for you. I’ll delve into spoilers at this point so spoiler haters beware. **SPOILER ALERT** The plot would probably be known to avid buffs who have heard about this movie. Without going in to specifics the plot is an interweaving of three stories of a couple through a thousand years. As a conquistador in 15th century Spain, a modern day research neurosurgeon and a 24th century monk/astronaut. In all of the interweaving stories, the thread is the same: a man trying to be with the woman he loves. The story is based on Mayan mysticism as has been talked about. It revolves around a tree of life (similar to Ponce de Leon and the fountain of youth) that the Mayans believe will give immortality to the drinker of the tree’s magical liquid. (The type of immortality is not the type of ‘Highlander’ idea we think, I won’t say much but here’s a hint: Buddhism). This tree of life also happens to be the same exact tree of life mentioned in Genesis in the Bible, which existed in the Garden of Eden and Adam and Eve were banished from paradise for also trying to drink from this tree. The film is in a sense, Biblical with a Mayan mystical twist with some Buddhism thrown in the mix. We see the conquistador trying to get to the Tree and being captured and taken to the tree where he meets a Mayan Priest who tells and shows him some things. The bulk of the story takes place in modern day and we see a research surgeon trying to find a cure for brain tumors to help his dying wife. He practices on a monkey and introduces a molecular compound from a South American tree with miraculous properties. His wife meanwhile is finishing a book while struggling day to day. The 24th century footage and visuals are the most enigmatic and awe inspiring where we see a monk/astronaut floating towards something in space in a bubble shaped ‘pod’ with a tree and a small creek. The conquistador’s journey from start to finish is shown as well as the modern day one, but the futuristic story can often times be confusing as it is shown in passing moments. Not a complete start to end. I can rave and go into so many details here, but I really don’t want to spoil it that much for people who read this. All I’ll say is, if you get the story and all the elements that Aronofsky shows and shares with us, your mind will be blown and you can agree with me that you have probably never seen a film like this. *END OF SPOILER**