"Being John Malkovich" on DVD
Funny, and Truly Bizarre
If you've ever
wanted to get inside someone's head to see what made them tick, this is the
movie for you.
stars as "Craig Schwartz," a master marionette artist who stumbles onto a
portal that takes one inside the personality of actor John Malkovich. Tumbling
through this gate gets one a fifteen minute ride as Malkovich, whereupon you're
dumped unceremoniously back into the real world beside the New Jersey
played by an "uglified" Cameron Diaz, is a flaky pet lover with awakening
lesbian tendencies, and his partner Maxine (Catherine Keener) is the same,
except for the part about being pet loving. Craig and Maxine decide to exploit
the portal for all it's worth, selling tickets at $200 apiece for the fifteen
minute "virtual reality" experience.
But Maxine and
Craig's wife have figured out a way to use the Malkovich vehicle as a way for
their lesbian leanings to be consummated heterosexually (how's that for a
concept?), which leads to Craig (who's also obsessed with Maxine) taking over
Malkovich's body so he can consummate his wannabe relationship with
Well, it is. It's also very funny.
plays himself, and himself being controlled by Craig - who figures out a way to
stay inside Malkovich permanently and forces him to quit his acting career and
become a puppeteer instead. Makovich is terrific in the role - in fact the
whole cast does a great job, and it's neat to see a blast from the past in the
persona of famed raconteur Orson Bean on hand in a supporting role.
You really have
to see "Being John Malkovich" to appreciate it. It's wild, strange, weird,
bizarre, strangely engrossing, and grossly funny.
gesounds as good as you expect from the DVD medium. Extras include TV
commercials and replays of some "films within the film" that are featured in
the movie (an orientation film and a documentary on Malkovich, for example).
There's also a feature on the art of puppetry and a couple of other featurettes
(including a look behind the scenes at "background driving" - the vehicles that
pass on the road during a movie. You also get an interview with director Spike
Jonze, cast/crew bios, "Spike's Photo Album" and the usual chapters, languages,
Malkovich from Universal Home Video
113 minutes, Widescreen (1.85:1), Dolby
Starring John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, Orson Bean,
Mary Kay Place and John Malkovich
Produced by Michael Stipe and Sandy
Stern, Steve Golin, Vincent Landay
Written by Charlie Kaufman, Directed by
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