(Review originally written at 24 November 2010)

The movie is not as entertaining and uplifting as Jean-Pierre Jeunet's more recent movies, which must be one of the reasons why "La cité des enfants perdus" isn't as praised and being loved as for instance some of his other movies like "Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain" and "Un long dimanche de fiançailles". This movie is definitely more dark or tone but with still its very distinctive imaginative, fantasy-like world, spirit attached to it.

If you aren't really taken by the movie its story, you should at least be blown away by its visuals. The movie has a great look and it manages to create a world of its own. As far as fantasy movies go, this one is definitely up there with the most imaginative ones. Not just all of its sets and costumes are great looking but also its limited effects and odd looking actors who play the characters.

Don't really understand why most people praise Ron Perlman for playing a French speaking role and all the claims that he does it flawlessly must have been written by his agent or something. I won't pretend as if I'm an expert on the language but I've been to the country and had French class at school, so at least I know how it should sound like and Ron Perlman just didn't sound very French. I can still understand and see how he got cast for the role though. It must have been because of his unique and distinctive look. The entire movie is being filled by a whole bunch of quirky but unique looking characters, so Perlman fits in perfectly with them.

The story is not that complex but it's still quite hard to keep up to, since so many oddball things and characters show up in this movie. It does really slow the movie down at some parts and I do wish the movie would had been a bit more entertaining and comedy-like to watch but this is, as it seems, due to the hand of co-director Marc Caro, who seems to be more fond of post-apocalyptic and darker stories than Jean-Pierre Jeunet. don't know if this also was the reason for their creative split-up as directors but fact remains that Jean-Pierre Jeunet has continued to make some beautiful, classic movies, while Marc Caro has had very little work since.

One greatly odd and beautiful looking film.


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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