“I’m Not There”

Lest you think all I do these days is walk the picket line with a megaphone, I decided to write about a rocking good movie we saw a couple weeks back. Yes, despite the chaos of the strike, Christine and I do still see movies — I think we’ve seen something like, twenty-four since October, which might be our record for this early in the season — and when one is as good as “I’m Not There”, I gotta share the wealth!

Probably not for all tastes, as it is a bit scattered and surreal at times, this insanely original tribute to the life and legend of Bob Dylan seriously rocks!

I’M NOT THERE promotional shot from LesFilms.com (Dec. 5, 2007)

Directed with jaw-dropping style by the mad genius Todd Haynes (“Far From Heaven”, “Safe” and my personal favorite, “Velvet Goldmine”) the movie features five different actors (Christian Bale, Ben Whishaw, Heath Ledger, Marcus Carl Franklin and Richard Gere) and a stunning, virtually unrecognizable Cate Blanchett (pictured above) as Dylan-esque characters in randomly intersecting stories based on pivotal moments in the singer’s life.

Christine and I were not huge Dylan-philes going into this, and we loved the movie. But hardcore fans, who will get all the veiled and not-so-veiled references to real incidents in Dylan’s life, might just find their heads literally exploding in the theatre. Yep, it’s that cool!

Promo shot of I’M NOT THERE’s Cate Blanchett in action (Dec. 5, 2007)

Trippy, experimental, and beautifully shot, this flick (like “Goldmine”) is a real mind-blower of a movie. My only major problem are the unbearably boring segments with Richard Gere. His scenes kill the messy, fluid momentum big time.

I read an interview with Haynes recently and he said the strangely languid pacing and visuals in Gere’s chunk of the movie are loosely based on Dylan’s 2003 film “Masked & Anyonmous”, which makes it a little bit cooler, but just barely.

So, grab some popcorn or something when Gere comes onscreen, but don’t miss a second of the electrifying Cate Blanchett and Marcus Carl Franklin (the young African-American kid pictured below) segments. They are both amazing, and if one, or both of them, are not nominated in supporting categories this year, the AMPTP hates writers, women and black people. Sorry, couldn’t resist. But seriously, these guys are both phenomenal!

Promo shot of I’M NOT THERE’s Marcus Carl Franklin (Dec. 5, 2007)

On a final note, snagged these cool pics from a French film review site I found online, and though I think only one of my readers (Bonjour, Mel!) could actually read the text on the site, they do have some great pictures of new and upcoming releases. Check it out at: Les-Films.Fr

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4 Comments

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4 responses to ““I’m Not There”

  1. Melissa

    Merci for the shoutout, Tom–I’ll check that out when I get a chance. I’m so glad to see your review of this very interesting film. Dave and I saw it on Sunday and I was a little unsure how D would respond to Haynes’ weirdness until I remembered that we have watched Goldmine together. I think I agree with just about everything you had to say, especially about the glorious Cate and Marcus Carl Franklin (where did that kid come from?!). What a cool film. Don’t even get me started on the cool soundtrack!

  2. As a ridiculously obsessive fan I’m going to drag the Mrs. to this one.

  3. yeti9000

    Yeah, Will…if you’re a fan, you’ll dig it like crazy, dude. But be forewarned, I wasn’t kidding when I said your head just might explode, so bring some wetnaps…

  4. yeti9000

    Melissa: Yow-za, I’m with you on that soundtrack…wow! Could Eddie Vedder appear on any more cool soundtracks this year?? Incredible…

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