Too many bugs.
That sums up my disappointment with Terry Gilliam's latest movie, The Brothers Grimm. Terry Gilliam's work has always contained both gritty realism and fabulous flights of fancy -- as in Brazil where Jonathan Pryce's Sam Lowry struggles to keep body and soul together in a nightmarish Orwellian society while dreaming at night of beautiful winged creatures. But in The Brothers Grimm, there are too few flights of fancy and too much gritty realism.
That brings me to the bugs. CGI bugs, as I am to understand. One of the spookier conceits of the movie is that young virgins are being kidnapped from a German town and taken by horrific means through the Dark Forest of all Dark Forests to be entombed in a circle around a tall tower where a Rapunzel-like evil queen needs their youth to regain her beauty.
Little girls like Gretel of the Hansel and Gretel tale and Little Red Riding Hood make a striking visual image entombed in all their youthful beauty in great stone sarcophagi... except for the animated bugs that swarm around said sarcophagi. I'm sorry, but there's no sense of dark wonder when bugs are swarming around. Bugs kill the sense of wonder for me. I get only the sense of disgust.
That's my complaint in a nutshell. More went wrong with the film, but to me it all comes down to the bugs. Still, a bad Terry Gilliam film is still worth seeing on the big screen on opening night, as Emily and I did yesterday. Far more boring films are not worth seeing outside of one's own home at all.
Wedding Crashers -- now THAT was a hilarious movie. Ish, Em and I went to see it last week after my friend Teri, who hasn't been laughing all that much lately, emailed me that she laughed more than she had all year at that film. Raunchy and funny.