Friday, May 14, 2010

Toothpick Castles

Call it Who Farted Cinema. You're sitting there wondering where that bad smell is coming from and then it hits you: it's coming from the screen. There's nothing like a stinky movie to make you question everything you hold dear.

In case the handsome mug above is not already familiar to you, it belongs to a gent called Zardoz. He floats through the air with not-quite-the-greatest-of-ease. He rises at the horizon like a concrete sun and comes bipping and bopping down through the clouds. He has a strange power. Stare into his eyes and you'll find yourself wearing diapers and growing your hair into a buccaneer's ponytail.

It can happen. Even the great Scotsman himself, Sean Connery, isn't immune.

Picture the scene, Sean Connery in his best suit, window open onto the view of his golf course, and who comes creeping up over Hole 9 but old gray face. Next thing the great Scotsman knows, Zardoz has taken control. Doffing his worsted wool suit, on goes the red nappy and bandoliers. The weather outside is windy and wet but no matter. At the door he nearly forgets his revolver, grabbing it from the sideboard with a little shiver. It sure is cold all of a sudden.

If you've seen Zardoz, it reeks of weirdness; if not, you should skip it if you don't go for the kind of movie where you might have to hold your nose. This is smell-o-vision on an epic scale.

As mentioned in my earlier post, some movies are Toothpick Castles. Creations of disturbed, deranged minds. I never questioned Sean Connery's sanity until seeing this one, and you know what happens when you start questioning celebrity icons. You start thinking they're loony, and if Zardoz isn't damning enough, there's Highlander 2: The Quickening on the great Scotsman's resume, the biggest pile of scoop law violation ever.

I still love Sean Connery. He doesn't do anything halfway. Only an actor this charismatic can pull off these kind of stunts and still emerge smelling like a rose.

The giant floating head doesn't last long. Within the first ten minutes of Zardoz, it descends from the heavens, dispenses some wisdom about guns not genitalia, spits out a heap of bullets and rifles, and afterward is killed by Sean Connery.

That, if nothing else, proves his sanity.

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