There may be spoilers ahead. I haven’t decided yet.
The wife and I saw “The Fall” last night. I read a lot of good things about the film, but it turned out to just be OK. I honestly believe there was a good (perhaps even a pretty good) film in there somewhere, but Tarsem failed to do what every good artist must: Kill his babies.
In less graphic terms, Tarsem needed somebody to reel him in. I’m sure the man is simply overflowing with ideas; the creativity probably pours out of his ears. But somebody grounded in reality should be constantly looking over his shoulder in an attempt to ensure a pleasant compromise between the nonsense in his head and the blandness of reality. Someone who is willing to step in and do things like remove 45 minutes of slow-motion photography.
I get it. The landscape is quite lovely.
I get it. The costumes are quite colorful and flow well in the wind.
I GET IT!!!
Said editor also needed to step in during the film’s finale and speed up Roy’s epiphany. I don’t need twenty minutes of filler to understand that the character/narrator is wrestling with his inner demons. I got it twenty-five minutes ago!
One would think that Tarsem would understand that the vast majority of his audience are probably film nerds; not only film nerds, but-even worse!-pretentious film nerds. Yes, pretentious film nerds are pretty obnoxious, but for the most part, they’re not stupid. At least not in the conventional sense. As a matter of fact, I’m willing to bet that anyone who attended junior high/middle school (attended, mind you, not graduated from), would probably see where this film is going from several miles away.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not asking for a twist. I’m just asking for an intelligent, somewhat concise, narrative. It’s especially important when the story is so threadbare and obvious.
On a side note: Tarsem, as I’m sure you are aware, also directed REM’s video for “Losing My Religion”. Like “The Fall”, this video also tries way too hard. That, and the song sucks. I guess I shouldn’t blame the latter on Tarsem, but I’m going to anyway.
Also, what is it with artists who feel they only need to use one name? Talk about taking yourself too seriously. The only entertainer I’m willing to accept the use of a singular moniker is Grover. Everyone else must utilize their first and last name. And anyone using only a symbol will hereby be referred to as “Turd Ferguson”.