This is one of
the cleverest movies made, thankfully, in quite a while. Just
a fun, mentally stimulating romp through the mind (literally)
of Malkovich as they would like us to see him.
Here's the tale. John 'brown-eyed-stud-lord' Cusack plays, Craig,
a down and out puppeteer who finds himself accepting a menial
job in a whack-o company filing stuff. He discovers an odd rabbit-like
hole behind a cabinet. Very Alice Through the Looking Glass-ish.
This hole takes us not to Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb but straight
into the head of world famous actor John Malkovich. WHAT? Yep!
Clever huh? Good thing they actually got the real Malkocabbitch
to play Maltomilkballvich huh? They had been thinking David Spade
as Malkovich, or Brain from Pinky and the Brain (The rat is strangely
similar in appearance to Malkovich), but then Johnnie agreed.
So, Craig , being ever the capitalist, decides -'hey here's
a way to make some extra dough off people who want to escape
reality for a few minutes' They get a mere 15, to be exact.
He starts his JM Inc. and charges folks to hang out in the mind
of Johnny. Hmm. I, would rather have hung out in George Clooney's
girlfriend's head personally, but Malkie ended up being surprisingly
fun. I especially enjoyed the 'Towel Dance' an interpretation
Craig choreographed while inside JM's noggin.
Malkovitch soon finds out about the little start-up company
and gets all huffy. He threatens to sue! Really, who would want
strangers puppeting us to do their laundry or sleep with their
heavy set husband who resembles Fat Bastard? They do get Malkofmagnesiavich
dive into his own portal (?) and find himself in a sea of Malkovichs!
Heavy concept, no? A bit of movie Algebra.
John Cusack was in that Lame-o-Rama Pushing Tin this year
and he needed redemption. He found it. Now, don't get me wrong.
He is always superb, acting wise as well as cinnamon bun sweet
on the retina, Pushing Tin's script sucked twas all.
Another attempted Cusack fix of mine went all haywire, as the
dear boy was seen way to briefly in The Thin Red Line.
I really did sit through a war movie, and I mean a war
movie for him. So, I was up for a little Cusack fix.
Know what I mean? Oh, sure Joan was in fabulous Arlington
Road, but alas, I am nay a clam digger,so that was not my
idea of a Cusack fix. After all that, Johnny was gruff and sleazy,
a Scum-A-Snarous Rex, visually in this. JC looked like a Bohemian-espresso
sipping-puppet master, with odious charm, but I suppose at least
I got to see him. Good work, John. Purr-Usualaal
John Malkovich, in case you're unfamiliar with him, is an act-tore.
That is to say, he gives one the appearance that he goes around
spewing Shakespeare quotes in daily conversation at the lesser,
common folk, and punctuates these verbal above-isms with grand
Thespian gestures of long ago West End idols. Well, not in this
movie. He sheds his PBS demeanor and seems to genuinely enjoy
frolicking around making a horse's arse of himself. What an actor!
To play yourself, as a character must be one of the hardest things
one can do. Very vulnerable position that was.
Oh, by the way, a dowdy-had-to-look-twice to verify, Cameron
'Perky Smile' Diaz plays Craig's love Lotte. Cameron is one
of those just cool people. Cam's got some real talent hidden
behind all that beauty, and this movie let's you see it.
Director Spike Jonz is someone to watch. He is best known for
whacko-weird music videos, off the wall commercials and such.
I believe that'll change. He's got that askew eyeball, like
Tim Burton, only maybe, not as macabre. Can't wait to see what
he comes up with next.
Being John Malkovich is a twisted tale that shouldn't work,
but with the cast they've gotten to romp through this wacky
script by Charlie Kaufman, it does. Check it out. I hope you
like it as much as I did.
SNACK RECOMMENDATION: Take Out Sushi (It's brain food,
rich in Omega 3)
STARRING: John Malkovich, John Cusack, Cameron Diaz and
DIRECTED BY: Spike Jonz