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I saw 'Brazil' a few months ago, and didn't think cinema could get any better. I bought 'Fisher King' with the expectation that it would be good, but dominated by the huge personalities of Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges. I didn't expect anything close to what I'd seen in 'Brazil'. But, contrary to what I'd expected the big on-screen personalities work in perfect harmony to this wacky world Gilliam presented us with.
A perfect script, a perfect cast, a perfect director. Perfect.
Like The Shawshank Redemption, this film is a treasure many never heard of upon it's release, or if they did, seem to have forgotten. Starring the almost demonic Jeff Bridges as Jack Lucas, a 'shock jock' who blames himself for inciting a listener to murder, the story catches up with him as his drunken self-loathing leads him to the brink of suicide. Enter Robin Williams as Parry, a seemingly unhinged tramp, whose decline was triggered by the death of his wife in the shootings Jack feels responsible for. The pair battle together for each other's sanity in a tale that encompasses Arthurian myth, knights on horseback in central park, and love blossoming in chinese restaurants.
While emotionally wrenching at times, this is still a beautiful, whimsical, and even very funny journey, with the price of entry justified by the real story of the Fisher King that Parry tells Jack in central park alone.
You'll laugh, cry, and swear off eating dumplings in public, but this is a small price to pay, as is the cost of the title. Even if Monty Python was never your thing, and Twelve Monkeys was just too sci-fi for your taste, still this film deserves a place in everyone's collection.
Jeff Bridges plays Jack, a radio shock jock whose unthinking tirade provokes a caller into a senseless act of violence that culminates in tragedy for a number of faceless New Yorkers. The tragedy derails Jack's career and ends his glitterati lifestyle. Gone is the fabulous hi-rise apartment, the model type, trophy girl friend, and the high paying media career.
Three years later, Jack finds himself living over a video store in a run down part of town with the video store owner, a blue collar ex-beautician, consummately played by Mercedes Ruehl, in a bravura performance that won her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar, and deservedly so. Despairing of his life and looking like the bum he believes himself to be, Jack goes down by the water front and toys with the idea of killing himself.
The issue is taken out of his hands when he is accosted by two youths who are sick of "his kind", as they apparently mistake him for part of the great unwashed horde of humanity of which they are heartedly sick. They beat him with a baseball bat and douse him from head to toe with gasoline, but just before they ignite him, a knight errant named Parry, touchingly played by Robin Williams, comes to his rescue and saves him from an untimely and excruciating death.
Parry takes Jack to his refuge, and there Parry tells him of his quest for the Holy Grail. A curious bond between the two men begins to form. After Jack leaves, he later returns, curious to know more about this strange, but kindly individual who saved his life.Read more ›