Saturday, February 21, 2004

adaptation is a profound process. and recursion is the key

I will remember Adaptation, Spike Jonze's followup to the wonderful Being John Malkovich, for extra-filmic reasons. And now, about a year later, I finally managed to watch it. I remember that the premise had me hooked. Any attempt in film at recursion is always interesting. As also time travel and its inconsistencies and paradoxes. This film has real characters playing real characters (themselves or others) as well as imaginary characters on screen engaged in real and fictional circumstances and conflicts. Writer's block. A search for something to be passionate about. Threats of self-indulgence (which, as far as I am concerned, were unfounded). Following up a film about a fractional office floor and a recursive journey into the portal into one's own mind is a tough (insurmountable?) task. And Donald Kaufman (and Charlie Kaufman as well, if you will) measures up just right. I hope director Spike Jonze continues to serve interesting off-beat material like this. The performances are first-rate. And I loved the scene where Susan gets John to help her over the phone to do a dialtone. That the film closes with an extract from Charlie Kaufman's screenplay and is dedicated to him is quite appropriate.

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