Movie Reviews

DVD Review: “The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus”

(Sony. 2 hours, 3 minutes. Rated PG-13 for violent images, some sensuality, language and smoking. Directed by Terry Gilliam.) With Christopher Plummer, Heath Ledger, Verne Troyer, Lily Cole, Andrew Garfield. Music by Mychael Danna and Jeff Danna.

This deal-with-the-Devil adventure tale is watchable, helped by Gilliam’s visual flourishes. Plummer is Dr. Parnassus, head of a traveling show troupe. In exchange for magical powers, the good Doctor has agreed to give up to Satan any child of his at age sixteen. Problem: he forgot to mention this to daughter Valentina (Cole), whose birthday is approaching. Ledger is Tony, a mysterious stranger with powers of his own, and an interest in Valentina. In his last role, Ledger acquits himself pretty well; as he died during filming, his friends and admirers Jude Law, Colin Farrell, and Johnny Depp completed his scenes. So yes, four actors play one part, but it’s mostly Heath. Tom Waits has fun as ol ‘ Beelzebub. Extras include a deleted scene, behind-the-scenes featurettes (including an interview and wardrobe test with Ledger), and commentary by Gilliam.

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