Every once in a while a film is produced that makes going to the theatre like a brand new experience. A film that is so unique and so incredible that you have to wonder how it is that you could have watched so many other lesser films and been satisfied. For me, the night I watched The Fall was the night I realized I hadn't seen a truly brilliant film in years.
|The Fall's movie poster inspired by Salvador Dalí's
"Face of Mae West Which May Be Used as an Apartment"
|L-R: The Mystic, Charles Darwin, The Indian, Black Bandit, Luigi, Otta Benga|
When the film begins, we are cleverly introduced to Roy's accident. By the use of slow motion, Colin Watkinson's intriguing cinematography and the 2nd movement of Beethoven's 7th symphony, we are given all the elements that will later fill Roy's epic to Alexandria.
According to Tarsem, there were no special effects in the film and that everything was shot on real locations. It's no wonder he had to travel to such exotic locations to capture the mind-blowing imagery in the film.
As determined and focused as Tarsem was when he created this film, some of the best elements were found by accident and later incorporated into the story. One example is how actress Catinca Untaru struggled to understand what Lee Pace was saying. This was creatively used as a device to help the young, first-time actress forge an Oscar-worthy performance. It's hard not to be charmed by her after watching so many of her delightful nuances: the way she fibs, her constant fiddling, and her overall child-like behavior.
|Lee Pace and Catinca Untaru|
And though the film has serious story elements, Tarsem makes sure to mix the dark drama with light-hearted humor. After all, the story is mostly seen through the eyes of Alexandria and her interpretation of the things around her. Even Roy's "Indian" character within his story is misinterpreted. As Roy explains his Indian (what he conceives as a Native American), Alexandria understands the character to be a man from India, much like someone with her cultural background would understand. (Side note: look for the Native American in the introduction scene).
|Jeetu Verma as "The Indian"|
This is more than just a film, it's an experience. A story that can bring your inner child out and view life through the eyes of innocence and fear. With The Fall Tarsem made his Citizen Kane and I look forward to his future films. Keep an eye out later this year (2011), Tarsem will be releasing his followup film, The Immortals and is currently in pre-production for an adaptation of "Snow White".
To watch the trailer for The Fall, click here: http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi2511470873/
And for more information, visit the film's official site: www.thefallthemovie.com
TRIVIA: Tarsem began his career directing music videos. He won Best Video of the Year at the 1991 MTV Video Music Awards for R.E.M.'s "Losing My Religion." He also directed the video for "Sweet Lullaby" by Deep Forest, which has a close look and feel of The Fall.