Directed by: Alejandro Jodorowsky
Starring: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Brontis Jodorowsky, Mara Lorenzio, Robert John
It’s only been about a year since I wrote a full review of El Topo—when it was being given a limited theatrical release. Another full review of Jodorowsky’s landmark cult film would be a little superfluous, since the original review is available here. I did, however, take another look at the film, and I can’t say that my take on it has changed appreciably. It’s every bit as fascinating, frustrating and off-putting as it ever was. Flashes of genius sit side by side with outright silliness. Moments of inspired filmmaking hold hands with unbridled amateurishness. It’s still a cruel picture (you won’t find a Humane Society disclaimer on this movie), and disturbing because its cruelty seems to be only at the service of Jodorowsky’s narcissism. But as an example of the kind of bold, over-the-top experimentation that was taking place in the arts 30-odd years ago, it’s unarguably important—showcasing both the creativity of the era and its excesses.
El Topo, part of a series of Classic Cinema From Around the World, will be presented at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, at Courtyard Gallery, 9 Walnut St. in downtown Asheville. Info: 273-3332.