DVD Review – The Fountain

The Fountain
Written and Directed by Darren Aronofsky
I wasn’t as prolific about this film upon release as I could have been, to be honest. In an email I sent to Darren Aronofsky and Eric Watson after I saw the film I wrote: “Along with a very talented group of people, you have created a beautiful, thoughtful, and heartfelt film” and of course, I told everyone I knew how the same thing. Some of them scoffed at me (most of them never having actually seen the film). I didn’t write a review for this blog and I wasn’t assigned to review it for any other outlet and for that, I am sorry. I certainly talked it up and considering how many people know, my mouth may be mightier than my pen. However, in the 8+ months since I saw the film, the traffic for this blog has grown approximately 500%, so maybe, just a little bit, I can influence a few more people.

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Aronofsky’s film is a beautiful and elegiac mediation on loss, life, love and death and the struggles inherent therein. Hugh Jackman’s performance is his best to date and Rachel Weisz is transcendent as a queen and a wife (and maybe even a tree) that understands truths that her beloved (Jackman) does not. About 20 minutes after the screening, I found myself on the 7th Avenue F-train platform, bawling. If this film doesn’t move you, you are a hard bastard, for sure.
Still, this is a DVD review, not a film review, so I won’t go into a full analysis of the film. Just be sure to have some hankies on . For an exceptional review of the film, I point you to Tom Hall’s blog.
As far as the DVD goes, as with most discs these days, picture and sound are well done, but the lack of extras is shocking. There’s a mini-doc on the disc (of course, no mention of The Brad Pitt debacle, when the actor dropped out of The Fountain in favor of Troy) and a trailer. That’s it. The “featurette,” “Inside The Fountain, Death and Rebirth,” is actually pretty cool. There’s some good behind the scenes stuff and some enlightening talk from the astonishing cinematographer Matthew Libatique, but hey, where’s the commentary? Where’s the full doc about the macro-photography? Where’s the doc about the score? Where’s the full interview with Libatique? Well, Aronofsky himself has some thoughts that he shared on his MySpace blog:

so the dvd came out.
happy that it is in the world.
hope more folks will get to see it.
as many of you can tell it is light on the extras as compared to my previous dvd releases.


everything at the studio was a struggle.
for instance: they didn’t want to do a commentary track cause they felt that it wouldn’t help sales.
i didn’t have it in me to fight anymore.
whatever.


He then goes on to mention that he and Niko the guy who shot the lone extra, have recorded their own commentary track and will be posting it soon. He also urges those who like the film to email the Criterion Collection and suggest it. A fantastic idea, if I do say so, myself!
If you’re interested in buying the DVD ofThe Fountain, click here.

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All photos ©Warner Bros.

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