I just saw The Fisher King for the first time a few weeks ago

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Nicholas Vargo, Jan 15, 2005.

  1. Nicholas Vargo

    Nicholas Vargo Second Unit

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2001
    Messages:
    419
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    La Mesa, CA
    Real Name:
    Nicholas Vargo
    I loved it and I thought it was one very sad movie, but also a very funny movie as well. It is filled with some of the most beautiful images I've ever seen (like the dance at Grand Central Station), and some very powerful scenes as well (the scene where Robin Williams confesses to Amanda Plummer the truth, and then the Red Knight bringing him back to that horrible night when he lost his wife). God, I hope that didn't spoil anything.

    Anyway, how high does the forum rank this movie? I'm curious. What do others think?
     
  2. questrider

    questrider Second Unit
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    487
    Likes Received:
    327
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Real Name:
    Brian
    I've always loved how deeply this movie touches me. I love the way it explores the themes of selflessness vs. selfishness and why people do things for other people. Do they do it selflessly to make the person they're doing something for happy, or are they selfish and doing it to make themselves feel happy? Great movie. And Jeff Bridges is still, to this day, America's greatest actor. Think about it: there isn't one movie he's made that's absolute garbage. My rule of thumb is that any movie with Bridges in it is 100% guaranteed to entertain on some level!!
     
  3. Quentin

    Quentin Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    101
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Real Name:
    Quentin H
    This is a big, big favorite of mine. So anti-commercial. So purely, truly Gilliam. Great, imaginative, human story.
     
  4. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2001
    Messages:
    4,148
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    So anti-commercial.

    Gilliam certainly didn't feel that way. In fact, when he accepted an award for The Fisher King from - I think - the Toronto Film Festival, he said, "Thank you for validating my decision to sell out", or something along those lines. Looking at Gilliam's body of work, The Fisher King is probably the most reserved, most safe, most traditional, most "feel good" film he has ever made, even if he does tilt the camera at odd angles from time to time.

    By the way, I don't say that as a criticism, because I think The Fisher King holds up as perhaps Terry Gilliam's best film. It has very little of the wild visual ambitions that make a Gilliam film a Gilliam film, but he maintains a fierce control over his frame nonetheless, and the character work and acting and pacing are all wonderful. The Fisher King is a lean, mean tiger of a movie with little superfluous fluff. It may not be great art in the tradition of a Brazil or Munchausen or Time Bandits, but it is a great movie.
     
  5. Quentin

    Quentin Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    101
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Real Name:
    Quentin H
    I was aware of Gilliam's feelings...but, I've always disagreed. In terms of casting stars, yeah it's his most "Hollywood" effort. And, the ending is his happiest. But, it's still anti-commercial with dream sequences, fantasy sequences, a dark theme, insanity, depression, etc.
     
  6. Jim Barg

    Jim Barg Second Unit

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
    Messages:
    395
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Real Name:
    Jim Barg
    It's also one of his rare box-office successes, too.

    Like Nicholas, I saw the film for the first time a couple of weeks ago. Having read the script a couple of times (the Applause reprint resides in my local library's film section), I knew what was coming and still enjoyed it a great deal. It made me a Jeff Bridges fan for life...

    I hope Sony/Columbia or Criterion gets around to giving this the DVD treatment it deserves (perhaps this year, with two Gilliam films on the way).
     
  7. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 1998
    Messages:
    7,585
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes, I love Bridges in that film. He and Dennis Quaid are probably my 2 favorite less appreciated actors. Heck, I love Bridges in King Kong and Tron.

    The film plays a bit long to me, but its very good and Williams was still dialed in at the time.
     
  8. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2003
    Messages:
    3,034
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I never thought I would ever hear words like "reserved", "safe", "traditional", or "feel-good" in connection with the Fisher King. Certainly in comparison to Gilliam's other films, they are, but not by any other standard.

    Fisher King is a truly astonishing film. I watched it again a week or two ago, after learning my flatmate had never seen it, and seeing it again reminded me of just how great it is. It's a very human story, perhaps more so than Gilliam's other films, and it deals with some great issues - redemption, forgiveness, grief, and just the general horror of our world. It's brilliant and terrifying, has perfect performances by great actors at the top of their game. I'm particularly fond of that little scene in front of Lydia where she talks about her fears of what will happen in her relationship.

    Gosh, I love this film.
     
  9. Jason Walstrom

    Jason Walstrom Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 6, 2003
    Messages:
    808
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    This has always been my favorite Gilliam film. I have been told many times how great Brazil is but I just don't get it. It's not for me, It doesn't speak to me. Time Bandits i loved as a child. I like parts of Baron Munchausen but The Fisher King is my favorite and I love it. Great cast, great script, great direction!
     

Share This Page