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Lunacy

8 customer reviews

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$19.59 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 7 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Lunacy + Alice + Collected Shorts of Jan Svankmajer
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Editorial Reviews

Interesting last film by Czeck Jan Svankmajer compares modern society to a lunatic asylum and compares two schools of thought as how best to manage it - absolute freedom vs absolute rules and punishment. Drawing inspiration from the writings of Edgar Allan Poe and the Marquis De Sade, Svankmajer's film combines live action and animation to illustrate the differences.

Special Features

  • "The Making of Lunacy"
  • Behind-the-scenes photos and illustrated "treatment" cards
  • Jan Svankmajer print interview
  • Theatrical trailer

Product Details

  • Actors: Jan Tríska, Pavel Liska, Anna Geislerová
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Czech (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Zeitgeist Films
  • DVD Release Date: February 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000KJTG7Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,678 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Lunacy" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Salvador Fortuny Miró on December 13, 2006
Format: DVD
In his introduction to the film inside the own film Jan Svankmajer compares modern societies with a lunatics assylum. The subject of " Lunacy " is essentially an ideological debate about how to rule an institution. " Basically there are two ways of managing an institution, and each equally extreme ": one looks at the absolute freedom; the other, the old-fashioned based on absolute rules and punishment. And there is also - he concludes - another one that combines the worst things of both " and this is the mad-house in we're living today ". As the protagonist of the film, as artists nowadays, modern democracies seem to move between two chairs, to walk behind the fog.

Placed in the ninenteenth century rural France, " Lunacy " is freely inspired by a not very popular tale by E. A. Poe titled " The system of Dr. Tarr and Prof. Fether ", about a mental hospital ruled by their patients ( this is by lunatics ), and also by the decadentist and anticlerical criticism of the Marquis the Sade. We find too some references to the spanish filmmaker Luis Buñuel ( for instance, in the scene in which the aeseptic and sadistic lead doctor of the asylum shows to her lover the content of a bizarre box and that the spectator never get to known ) so as another tribute to Poe in the scene of the therapeutic burial. The result is a satirical and thought-provoking surreal horror tale where Svankmajer conjugates grotesque, cool stop-motion animation, kinky sex, gothic horror imaginary, disturbing analogies, circular nigthmares, lunatics and meat puppets to built up a pessimistic political parable about mankind alienation and indecisiveness in industrializied societies.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By gam on October 16, 2007
Format: DVD
Absolutely great movie, what else to expect from Svankmajer's creativeness and surreal imagery. Now add to the mixture: 2 Poe's obscure stories and De Sade's perversion. Wow, blasphemy, insanity, sex, introversion, revolution, are a few words to describe this excellent movie, all with the artistic and emotive touch from the master. I really don't want to extend the review, it will be much better if you watch it and came with your own personal interpretation, and don't loose a piece of mind in the process.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By wiredweird HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on February 28, 2008
Format: DVD
How to describe Svankmajer's films? They taunt the sense of reason, showing you that rationality doesn't go nearly all the places that imagination does, or that madness does.

Jean Berlot finds himself in a mental hospital, where the patients seem to be in charge and the keepers are just as mad. It hardly seems to matter who's on which side of the locked door. He witnesses bizarre transformations of people and chickens, satanic masses filled with thundering blasphemy, and torments being called treatments. Or does he? Which of these events appear only in his own mind?

It's never quite clear, and baffling interludes of stop-animation give only indistinct hints. There's a commentary and narrative in Svankmajer's creeping masses of flesh, throbbing but inanimate tissue, and dancing beef tongues, but for the life of me I can't be sure what it is.

I've liked other of Svankmajer's works better. Alice carries a clearer story, winding itself in a loose orbit around Lewis Carroll's beloved classic. Some of his shorts seem at least as clever and far more legible. Still, this appeals to a dark sense of wonder. If you consider linear storytelling to be over-rated, you might find a lot to enjoy in this one.

-- wiredweird
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Format: DVD
Jan Svanksmajer strikes again with this relentless and provocative film. A wonderful tapestry in which demons emerge. And what other place in the world is the most appropriate but a madhouse to show the decline in all its dreadful human cruelty and thirst for hidden perversions inimiginable?

With inspiration coming from Poe and the Marquis de Sade, the film revolves around Jean Berlot, who is unwittingly recruited by a stranger who leads him to the antechamber of hell. An asylum where black masses, perversions, and punishments therapeutic fuerales numbered according to the degree of cruelty are put into practice. Jean meets Charlotte, an attractive woman who falls for revealing some of the secrets behind the door.

An amazing trip to the antipodes of the unfathomable horror universe without restrictions. Svnakmajer pays well-deserved tribute to the legendary movie Marat Sade by Peter Brooks, 1967.

Do not miss it.
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