Friday, September 27, 2013

"Twixt" (2011)

There is an inherent danger in innovation, creativity and pushing the limits of any medium. Coppola has, of late, pushed himself into some creative restrictions that have made his films less than satisfying for everyone who is not Coppola. Namely, he insists that his stories be “completely original” and that his films be totally self-produced. As a result, they can end up being very cheap (looking) and all over the place plot-wise.

“Twixt” supposedly arose from a dream Coppola had, from which he was awoken before it ended. Afterwards he pursued—fruitlessly—to revisit the dream and discover its ending. The resulting “story” is one where a writer has a dream and constantly seeks to find the end. That end, ends up being a completely unrelated, disjointed fabrication he writes for his book, which is an extremely limited success.

The only thing that keeps this film watchable (if it is indeed even that) is the excellent acting from the likes of Val Kilmer, Bruce Dern, and Elle Fanning. Even the “quirky” and “strange” moments in the film are cheated by the jarring, cheap effects that constantly take one out of the film and remind the viewer that we are watching a creation.

Along the way there is a lot of attempts to go deep, stuff about loss, death and mourning. There are conversations with Edgar Allan Poe and visions of a preacher who becomes a monster of his religious madness, but it is all too disjointed and pointless to amount to anything.

Even the best and most talented artists benefit from collaboration and interaction with others. The protagonist of this story resists collaboration in the pursuit of his writing; Coppola should have sought out some.

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