El Topo

El Topo ★★★★

In theory I feel like I would've hated this, as everything I've heard about Jodorowksy has made him seem like a meaningless surrealist, or one that I would loathe. Make no mistake, there are parts of this that I do not like - a lot of sexual surrealism falls completely flat (and comes back far too often within the first half) and I'm not thrilled with some of the surrealism clearly meant for shock value that feels vapid. But Jodorowsky does have a eye for visuals and colours, and this film has a lot of beautiful visuals and landscapes in this that combine for some intriguing images - highlights do include the rich town illuminati symbols and him sitting by what seems to be a waterfall shaped like a church organ. The message of going through God's journey to enlightenment - being god's messenger then being tempted by lust and then regretting it to try to do good deeds - is portrayed pretty well in this too, as it seems Jodorowsky understands the spirtual journey it takes to do such a thing. This even further begs the question of why it is painted in a surreal light at all, which I think further drags this down then if you just played it mostly straight with a few quirky choices that feel more genuine than trying to play up a "surreal aspect". Oh well, maybe Jodorowsky's other movies will fare better...

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