Insignificance (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
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New video interviews with Roeg, Thomas, and editor Tony Lawson
Making Insignificance, a short documentary shot on the set of the film
Original theatrical trailer
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Chuck Stephens and a reprinted exchange between Roeg and screenwriter Terry Johnson
Top Customer Reviews
An eclectic gathering indeed. If it helps you to conceptualize where this film is headed, think of this as an evening of psychotherapy for the rich and famous. Marilyn wants to be loved for her brain, yet continually relies on her sex appeal for attention. Her husband and sports legend Joe DiMaggio wants to express his deep feelings of love for his wife but can't seem to express himself without a pack of baseball cards in his hand. Meanwhile Senator Joe McCarthy is busy scowling and perfusely sweating as he continues a campaign of threats and intimidation against everyone in the room.
Einstein's quiet evening alone has definitely taken an unexpected turn. Between the emotional angst displayed by the vulnerable sex kitten, the inept attempt at reconcillation by her superstar husband and the politics of fear levied by the Senator, the usually aloof, unattached scientist finds himself in an environment beyond his control, even for one of his mental capabilities. It turns out to be an evening of personal discovery for all involved.
'Insignificance' is really a mixed bag, one of those films you either get it or you don't. Not by any means a great movie, but it has its moments, the best moment being Marilyn's attempt to impress Dr. Einstein by explaining his theory of relativity using toy trains and flashlights as props. Very cute, thank you Theresa Russell!
This may not be a film that would stand up well to alot of repeat viewings but worth a viewing nonetheless. Starring; Michael Emil as Albert Einstein, Theresa Russell as Marilyn Monroe, Gary Busey as Joe DiMaggio and Tony Curtis as Joe McCarthy.
I prefer straightforward storytelling in my movies and his work is just too cryptic and experimental for my taste.
Nevertheless, even aside from Roeg's kaleidoscopic images, I'm not quite sure I get the complete message that screenwriter Terry Johnson is trying to put across in INSIGNIFICANCE, an adaptation of his stage play that deals with a fictional meeting between 1950s icons Marilyn Monroe (Theresa Russell), Albert Einstein (Michael Emil), Joe DiMaggio (Gary Busey) and Senator Joseph McCarthy (Tony Curtis), none of whom are specifically identified in the film.
Perhaps the movie is about the burden of "celebrity," or the fact that "knowledge is not necessarily truth," or maybe it's about those ideas and a few others. Certainly there are many different thoughts tossed about in the picture's 108 minute running time.
Einstein, played by Emil with a childlike innocence, and Monroe are the central figures in the piece, and the scene in which she uses flashlights and various toys to explain to him his "theory of relativity" is a delight. Also memorable is a scene with the scientist and the DiMaggio character where the great athlete justifies his "celebrity" with the fact that he was featured in 13 series of bubblegum baseball cards.
Busey is marvelous as DiMaggio, as is Ms. Russell in capturing the persona of Monroe. Indeed, all of the actors shine in their individual roles. It is their performances, as well as many of the well-written scenes from the original stage play, rather than Roeg's flair for "opening up" the action, that make INSIGNIFICANCE worth watching.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Insignificance is an interesting and talky film: part comical, part intellectual, just a bit tragic. Read morePublished 10 months ago by rbrogan3
Who doesn't want to see Marilyn Monroe explaining the theory of relativity to Albert Einstein in a NYC hotel room in the wee hours! Read morePublished 17 months ago by Lionel Verney
Albert Einstein, Marilyn Monroe, Joe DiMaggio and Senator Joseph MacCarthy together to talk relativity.
Weird, Interesting if you like "off beat"
All of Nicolas Roeg's films are well-framed, interestingly edited and not entirely possible to completely understand in one viewing, but they do reward multiple viewings as you... Read morePublished on September 20, 2013 by C. Hyatt
I'm not sure how faithful either the script or the performances were to the broadway play, but most of this seems shallow and overacted today. Read morePublished on July 18, 2013 by mr. contrarian
Was looking for all Will Sampsonw movies, found this great movie on his list, but can't fined him listed. hope the rest will be better! ~:-|Published on April 21, 2012 by oklahoma
This film is a classic not only in it's originality but in it's ability to capture the mood and craziness of a time period. Read morePublished on August 7, 2011 by Jonathan M. Winell
This is without doubt a hidden / forgotten gem of cinema. The scene where the Maralyn Monroe charater is explaining the theory of relativity to Albert Einstein using a toy train is... Read morePublished on November 28, 2010 by William M Nesham