SECTION New Frontier Films
RUN TIME 131 min
As potbellied, satin robe-clad Marv opens The Forbidden Room, he instructs us on the history and significance of bathing. One might never guess what’s in store from Canadian auteur’s Guy Maddin’s ode to the lost movies of the silent era, honoring classic cinema while electrocuting it with energy. Bursting with playful cacophony, Maddin’s opus takes us high into the air, under the sea, around the world, and into dreamscapes, spinning tales of amnesia, captivity, deception, and murder.
A game cast including Mathieu Amalric, Charlotte Rampling, and Maddin perennial Udo Kier embody a cavalcade of misfits, thieves, and lovers, imbuing passion and humor into Maddin’s new epic (co-directed by Evan Johnson). Visuals, sound, even story are layered upon themselves, color schemes morph into and over one another, as each element heightens the joyful delirium of the kaleidoscopic viewing experience. The film also contains copious amounts of the filmmaker’s trademark twisted whimsy and absurdist eroticism—from a lusty crew of female skeletons to an exceptionally catchy musical celebration of the derriere. —H.Z.
COMPANY Phi Films