U.S., 1995, 129 min, 35mm, Dir. Terry Gilliam, Rated R, Universal Pictures
La Jetée / 12 Monkeys
Saturday, 4/29 at 11:45 pm
"One of the best-looking and smartest sci-fi films of the modern era." – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy on 12 Monkeys
"The soundtrack's texture is similarly sparse, and the fluid montage leads the viewer into the sensation of watching moving images. Until, that is, an extraordinary epiphany when an image genuinely does move." – Geoff Andrew, Time Out on La Jetée
The CGAC presents a rare double bill on 35mm of Terry Gilliam’s neo-noir 12 Monkeys with the French classic it was based on, La Jetée. When Universal Pictures bought the remake right’s to La Jetée, the studio hired Blade Runner screenwriter David Peoples to write the new version. Terry Gilliam, who usually directs his own scripts, found Peoples’ work to be an “intriguing and intelligent script.” What resulted is a uniquely Gilliam-branded tale of non-linear madness. In 2035, convict James Cole (Bruce Willis) reluctantly volunteers to be sent back in time and discover the origins of a deadly virus that wiped out nearly all of human civilization. But when Cole is accidentally sent to 1990 instead of 1996, he winds up in a mental hospital, where he meets a psychiatrist (Madeleine Stowe) and the unhinged son (Brad Pitt) of a famous virus expert (Christopher Plummer). The narrative is taken directly from La Jetée, whose story about a post-nuclear war experiment in travel is presented almost entirely from still photos, emphasizing how memories and experiences are fleeting.
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