Faust video

ICA Projects

When I was about 10 I saw Time Bandits for the first time--and I had never been so confused in my short life. As I watched writer/director/animation legend Jan Svankmajer's Faust, I was transported back to that time when confusion reigned supreme. Lovingly made and wonderfully ugly, Faust is undeniably striking. A sort of dream logic drives the story forward (albeit circuitously), incorporating many strange and troubling images along the way: ballerinas raking hay, a marionette cum blow-up doll sequence, and of course the ever-present Mephistopholes.

Related Stories

More About

But the spellbinding and bizarre world Svankmajer's fashioned distracts so much from the central drama that the transformation of Dr. Faust into a repentant-but-doomed Everyman is lost--and with it, the story's mythic tragedy. However, if you're a fan of Svankmejer's animation (which recalls the work of the Brothers Quay, who are big fans of Svankmejer's themselves), baffling Eastern bloc artiness, or symbolism with a capital "S," you will not be disappointed. Otherwise, you may be left wondering if Faust's eternal punishment was to watch this film over and over again in hell.

 
My Voice Nation Help
 
Loading...