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22 March, 2007 / Erik


The first thing you need to know about Tideland is this: it’s the smirking return of Terry Gilliam’s hate for the mundane world. The first ten minutes of the film illustrates that world more oily, out of synch, and lost than any previous example in the Gilliam cannon (see the Fisher King, Brazil, and the early parts of Time Bandits for examples of this mundane world). Like the later bad trip section of Fear & Loathing, there is a sickness that infects this portion of Tideland. The main child character, Jeliza-Rose, helps Jeff Bridges’s Noah shoot up. Shortly after that, her mother dies. She then talks Noah down from performing a Viking Funeral and by minute fifteen they’ve escaped to an abandoned farmhouse. Until they walk into the house, every shot of the movie is cantered. It is the tradition of Gilliam’s work; his protagonists use the gift of imagination to escape these dilapidated mundane worlds. In Tideland, we see all of Gilliam’s disappointment and hate for that banal world of failed people come to bare. It’s no wonder so many people hate it.


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