First there was the location – a city resembling a broken down, washed out London of an all too believable future. Most of the exterior wall space is covered with screens carrying video adverts, the park is dominated by banks of prohibition signs, and the traffic drives on the right. And then there’s the hero, Qohen. Apart from the fact that he speaks with a German accent, has even less hair than I do (zero, by a strange coincidence,) and exhibits an uncharacteristically reticent air when approached by the sexy young French woman, he’s pretty close to a mirror image.
The rest of the film is about the nightmare of his life, and in true Gilliam fashion much of it went over my head. What didn’t go over my head was his response to the nightmare – fighting the good fight until he flips altogether and throws himself into the black hole of cosmic chaos.
Ah, but then he wakes up inside his own head where the sand on the tropical beach is soft, the water warm and inviting, the sunset seductive, and the French woman calling his name even more so.
Good. Now I can sleep easy.