Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Rainbow Thief

(1990, UK, 87m)
d Alejandro Jodorowsky p Robert Taicher, Vincent Winter sc Berta Domínguez D. ph Ronnie Taylor ed Mauro Bonnanni pd Didier Naert, Alexandre Trauner m Jean Musy cast Omar Shariff, Peter O’Toole, Christopher Lee, Francesco Romano, Jude Alderson, Jane Chaplin, Berta Dominguez D., Ian Dury

A decidedly thin tale, with Sharif as a cheerfully thieving bum and O’Toole as a prince living in the sewers, with a glove-puppet of his late Irish wolfhound. He’s awaiting the death of eccentric millionaire uncle Lee, who feeds caviar to his Dalmatians and bones to his dinner guests before slipping into a coma amidst a bevy of hookers. The setting is some fantasy old-world northern European city where Jodorowsky indulges his romanticised and caricatured view of poverty, making light stabs at capitalism and the church, and washing it all clean with an apocalyptic rainstorm finale. The fairytale tone is a failure, O’Toole is grossly wasted and Sharif is mostly annoying. The production was fraught and Jodorowsky disowned the result, and apart from the scene of a midget being beaten by children, it’s just neither sufficiently weird nor cruel.

© Time Out Film Guide

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