The Dancer Upstairs
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Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
- Director and Actor commentary by John Malkovich and Javier Bardem
- Sundance Channel - Journeys with Malkovich
- Making-of Featurette
Top Customer Reviews
These are the folks who called it slow, too restrained, confusing.
For the thinking viewer, this movie is not slow, and it is not confusing. It is a visual feast that leaves the mind, and soul, reeling; it is a puzzle that stays unfinished just long enough to make its points, and then closes with a heartbreakingly poignant finale.
It is a tightly plotted, emotionally moving film that can be taken on several levels: as a political thriller, as a police procedural, as a meditation on the pleasures of domestic life v. extramarital passion.
Most powerfully, though, this film talks about, and parallels, explosions -- the explosions of art, of politics, of terrorism, and of passion -- v. restraint. The restraint, for example, of a good man trying to live a decent life in a broken world.
It's hard to talk about this film's most brilliant moments without giving away the whole plot, and that you don't want to do, because this movie's surprises are well worth it.
But one can say -- watch how Malkovich uses the color red. Watch how he uses bars, as if the bars of a cage, when shooting Javier Bardem. Notice parallels, including in a scene where a young girl dances before a series of reflecting mirrors. Note the music she dances to. Notice who is the sole person ever to have photographed a certain elusive terrorist.
Note references to Kant, most famous for his "Critique of Pure Reason."
No, this film is no art house puzzle. But it does offer more than the pure pleasure and visual excitement of a nail biting political thriller, which it offers as well.
It offers us food for thought about one of the biggest issues of the day -- terrorism.Read more ›
Inspector Rejas is a massive still presence. His principle investigative instruments are a fascination for fact, an impassive stare and an unrelenting deliberative nature. And with these, he does eventually determine the identity of the leader of this goalless revolution: a former university professor, known only as Ezekiel. But Ezekiel is an empty revelation: Rejas was never really looking for who but for why.
The Dancer Upstairs is commonly described as a political thriller--a misnomer that may dissuade you from recognizing it as a work of another and higher intellectual order. It is, rather, a meditation on the horror of things inexplicable. We are presented with a puzzling succession of events for which we, like Inspector Rejas, must provide an explicating narrative of some sort. Our motivation is the desire to repair the imbalance, to eliminate the random, violent variables that have wrecked our equation for the peace of meaning.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the most authentic, sublime performances I have seen by Javier Bardem.Published 4 months ago by Color Love
I enjoy this movie so much I wanted to make it a part of my permanent library. Javier Bardem is excellent.Published 5 months ago by bettyjane
This was a very demanding gut wrenching experience. Unique -provocative and elegantly photographed.
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