Movie review by Dennis D. McDonald
Although visually arresting, I thought Tarsem Singh’s THE CELL was inuman, inhumane, and tawdry. THE FALL is also visually gorgeous. It’s also clever, imaginative, and touching.
The story: a bedridden stunt man from 1920’s Hollywood befriends a little girl in the same hospital who is recovering from a broken arm. He tells her a longwinded adventure story about “Indians.” How she imagines the story — she thinks he’s talking about India — is gloriously illustrated in a series of episodes that appear to have been filmed all over the world in some of the most gorgeous and colorful settings imaginable.
As fantastic as the movie is, there’s a serious undercurrent of loss, suicide, and struggle that is only dimly understood by the little girl. As adults we see it.
Viewers should prepare to be dazzled but should not expect sugar-coating, either.
PS - among other things you’ll see an elephant swimming viewed from under water. It’s not CGI, it’s real, just as everything else in this visually stunning film appears to be.
Movie review copyright (c) 2009 by Dennis D. McDonald