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The Fall, It’s a Trip.

When Dorothy Gale opened the door of her recently relocated home to find a colorful world of wonder and enchantment, one can imagine that she must have felt a tad bit beside herself. As I walked out of the theater after seeing Tarsem Singh’s The Fall I felt strangely connected to Gale in a way. It was as though I has just walked through that farmhouse door into a storybook world of drug induced dreams and feverish color wars—a place that is “far, far away. Behind the moon, beyond the rain…”

The Fall is like a Frankenstein-film composed of elements of The Little Princess, The Wizard of Oz, Pan’s Labyrinth and a smidgeon of The Princess Bride. Set in Los Angeles circa 1920, the movie pairs together a broken hearted and broken bodied stuntman (Lee Pace) and a little girl (Catinca Untaru) as he tries to manipulate her into assisting him with his suicide. He does this through the magic of storytelling, offering her more of the story in exchange for morphine pills that she steals from the dispensary. At its core the plot is simple, but what grows out of this fruitful seed is an inspiring relationship and a visually captivating tale of revenge and self-realization. Or, the movie was just some expensive peyote trip that involved a bunch of people wearing bright clothes. One or the other—you decide.

I for one really enjoyed it. The little girl was unbearably adorable. I don’t think I have ever seen such a lovable and innocent child actor. She made my heart hurt, and I know it was her because I didn’t eat anything beforehand that would give me heartburn. Nope, she was just too freaking cute. Couple that with the natural charm of Lee Pace, who I haven’t really seen in anything (he is in that show Pushing Daisies and was also in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, but I don’t watch the show and the movie didn’t really call out to me), and what you have a is an undeniably perfect duo. Pace’s natural reactions make it so easy to follow along with what might have otherwise been perceived as a deviant relationship between an older man and a little girl in a hospital bed. The father-daughter love that develops between these two characters shot an arrow straight through my cold-dead-stone of a heart.

Next, I would love to describe to you what this movie does in terms of visual effects, but that’s impossible. Miles delves into it a tiny bit on this week’s episode of ShowShow and that may be a good starting point. All I can say is: WOW. Are there real places like this? Did I fall for the story too? Yes, I sure as shit did.

Unfortunately, the movie isn’t playing everywhere. I had to make the trek to Irvine to see it, but for me it was worth it. So yes, I would recommend it.

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