Friday, August 23, 2013

THE HOLY MOUNTAIN (1973) -
Alejandro Jodorowsky


After watching The Holy Mountain again in the best widescreen transfer of it I've ever seen (no random Japanese subtitles this time!), I think it's safe to say it's Jodorowsky's greatest movie mindfuck. It's his ode to the tarot, but also his 2001: A Space Odyssey. Ten films' worth of stunning visual tableaus are all jammed into one, with twice that many religions and the iconography thereof exalted and ridiculed in the same scene. This movie is vacuum-packed with great ideas about...well, everything. Life, sex, art, spirituality, excrement. You name it, it's in there somewhere. This is serious creativity overload. I almost got a headache trying to take everything in.

Who was my favorite of the seven planet masters this time around? Well, I think it had to be Klen from Jupiter. His "ear cocaine." His grope-friendly art installations. His giant sex robot. His mistress who stimulates the giant sex robot and makes it give birth to a mewling baby sex robot (of course). Not to mention his intergalactic comb-over (not pictured here). Klen!


And what about the commentary? There's even more scatological gold in The Holy Mountain Jodorowsky track than there was in El Topo. Here's a sampling of some of the nuggets...

- George Harrison was all set to play the lead but blanched at the one scene where the hero gets his bunghole ritualistically cleansed on screen. Jodorowsky refused to cut it, thereby losing Harrison (and a good deal of his funding). So much for the Quiet Beatle...and his butt.

- The odd explanation as to why Jodorowsky will never direct a blockbuster superhero movie, much less a Superman movie: "Superman! (hisses) He's a being a who can't make love because he would destroy his partner!"

- A planned Don Juan film project with Carlos Castaneda was aborted solely because Castaneda came down with a case of Montezuma's Revenge.

- Teaching chimpanzees to mimic Zen monk positions is a tricky business. But doable, apparently.

- Making amends with Allen Klein and getting back shared rights to his films is trickier but also doable.

- And, finally, Jodorowsky on solving the world's energy crisis: "If all of humanity shit from two meter high toilets, we'd have all the energy we need!" (something to do with kinetic energy, I'm assuming)

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