Andrei Tarkovsky is generally called one of the greatest movie directors of all time. Why is that? Is it because he had magnificent writing skills? Is it because he somehow managed to pick the cream of the crop as far as actors go? Is it because he was able to direct pretty frames? No. It's because he could direct pretty frames with a meaning. Every single frame has been designed and well, framed, with an obscure amount of skill, creating perfection. This does not only create pretty frames; it creates pretty frames with a meaning. What does this have to do with Darren Aronofsky's new movie, The Fountain? Aronofsky has reached the point where he can create pretty frames with a meaning. Is there really much more that needs to be said about the directing of the movie? I mean it's more than enough to say that the man is on the same level as Andrei Tarkovsky. Aronofsky's screenplay is pretty much equal in quality. Apparently he wanted to recreate the sci-fi genre, in the same way that Star Wars did back in the day. In my opinion he succeeded, as impossible as it may sound. Unlike many modern sci-fi films, the future part of this movie features no technology, which is great. I'm tired to see how fast spaceships can go, or how effective laser beams are when destroying planets. The special effects, which do not use CGI, are absolutely stunning. It's all done by macroimaging, which basically means taking really sharp, little images of blood cells and such. It looks amazing, and it shows off the best in the ending, which is the most beautiful ending I've seen during my life, and it's perfectly held together by Clint Mansell's excellent score.
The acting in this movie has been called somewhat steady, and people claim it has no variety. I beg to differ. The only reason Hugh Jackman propably agreed to do this movie is because his characters are all extremely different, and so he also gets to show off his different emotional stances, instead of simply showing how much hair he can grow and then shave in the name of his role. I was especially impressed with what this "wolverine" could do with the doctor character, who is almost constantly in pain and torment. Also, he showed great despair around the end as the Zen-guru. Weisz is somewhat balanced between her two roles; as the wife, she shines with joy of the little life she has left, and as the queen she is dead serious about everything. It works well, and she also gets to show off her acting talents. Ellen Burstyn and many others come by for side roles, but they stay in the shadows, as they should. This is a movie about two people in love. Well okay, 5 people in love, and one is in love with a tree. But still.
The Fountain is, in my opinion, the best movie of 2006 alongside Children Of Men. It would have entirely revolutionized sci-fi cinema if it would've been properly marketed. But instead it flopped. Sometimes this is the fate of great movies and I accept it. I just hate to see a new Michael Bay-flick surpass something that migh make people care about themselves, and make them happy. Oh well. Shit happens.(read on) (show less)