Aug 21 2013 5:10pm

Terry Gilliam is Sick of Superheroes and Zombies, Offers Us Zero Theorem

The Zero Theorem poster

Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem looms before us, inching ever closer, premiering at festivals and cons while cruelly denying us a US release date. Dammit, cinema gods! It’s been five years since Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, and that wasn’t actually as good as we wanted it to be. (And we’re not even going to discuss what you did to Tideland.) Why do you hate us, cinema gods? Or more to the point, why do you hate Terry Gilliam? Perhaps you feed on the frustration caused by bureaucracy, and were thus frightened by Brazil? Perhaps you’ve always been pissed that your favorite Python (we’re just assuming Eric Idle here) didn’t go on to become a visionary director, and ours did? We’re finished with you cinema gods. 

We’ll come back and worship you again if you give this movie a release date.

In the meantime, we can glory in the poster, and take a look at Gilliam’s director’s statement—like all of Gilliam’s films, it sounds like Zero Theorem is willing to ask difficult questions, and then stick a few more questions in where the answers are supposed to be: 

What gives meaning to our lives, brings us happiness? Can we ever be alone in our increasingly connected and constricted world? Is that world under control or simply chaotic? We’ve tried to make a film that is honest, funny, beautiful, and surprising; a simple film about a complex modern man waiting for a call to give meaning to his life; about inescapable relationships and the longing for love, full of quirky characters and sparkling performances; raising questions without offering obvious answers. Hopefully, it’s unlike any film you have seen recently; no zombies, no caped crusaders or alien spacecraft. Actually, I might have lied about that last item.”

You can watch an interview with Gilliam talking about Zero Theorem and a new Blu-ray of Time Bandits here, and check out his completely sober and sane opening video from San Diego Comic-Con that was shown along with clips from the film last month, and twitch in anticipation along with us: 

Keith DeCandido
1. krad
Feh. I adored Parnassus, and Tom Waits's performance alone was Oscar-worthy. Feh, I say again.

---Keith R.A. DeCandido
Bobby Stubbs
2. Valan
I, too, am surprised by the genuine 'meh' reaction from most people about the Imaginarium. I absolutely love it. His best film since 12 Monkeys. And I am really looking forward to The Zero Theorum.
Mary Rose
3. Mary Rose
Saw Imaginarium in a completely empty theater - one of my very best cinematic experiences. Obviously not his best movie - but that's the very nature of best. It's one of my favorites for sure.
Sheila Smith
4. SheilaSmith
The visuals and the mystery of this script reminded me of Dark City more than any other movie.
I found the frequent use of action lines in between the dialogue to be annoying and distracting. For insance, Q asks a question, action line, Bob responds, action line, Q asks another question, action line, Bob responds, etc. Damnit, Zero Theorem! handmade jewellery
Why can't you be more like Trouble With the Curve, let your conversations flow, and let my imagination fill in the physical blanks?
Mary Rose
5. Barnham
Why do critics hate Terry Gilliam so much? He is the most extraordinary director out there! --- Doctor Parnassus is a great film, is it Brazil? No, I’m tired of everything being compared to Gilliam’s greatest piece. When you create something so incredible it is difficult to top, but it doesn't need to be. Terry's other works are exceedingly good; much better than all the Hollywood rubbish we are seeing, but because it's not Brazil it is brandished as disastrous, it’s unfair on him.

People need to stop comparing what he does now with what he did then and start enjoying his work for what it is. I for one am biting at the chomp to go and see Zero Theorem and it pains me that there isn't even a release date in Australia yet. --- I consider myself a patient person but Terry always tests that.

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