The Fall

I’m pretty darn sure after seeing the trailer that I want to see this movie, but there’s one little fillip, one name that gets briefly dropped, that really makes me wonder what’s going to happen. It isn’t explained in the clip, unfortunately, it’s just there, so I’ll have to cough up $5 to find out.


  1. #1 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    that’s simply too intriguing to pass up. they’ll get my nine bucks (more like ten-fiddy, but hey, i’m in Alaska)

    the clip reminds me a little of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, mixed with The Adventures of Baron Munchausen and The Princess Bride (for the story-within-a-story framework)

  2. #2 Zeno
    February 26, 2008

    I don’t know how much of a participant he’ll be, but there once was a young naturalist who toured the world. I imagine he happens along at just the right time to join in an adventure.

  3. #3 Pleco
    February 26, 2008

    Me and you both..

  4. #4 Clan/Rewired
    February 26, 2008

    Wel…. Tarsam directed The Cell, which was a great example of form over content, and a pretty pretentious and vapid one at that, but it looked great…. This sort of seems to go the same way, but boy, produced by David Fincher and Spike Jonze??!! There has got to be something to this flick to get three people together that are at such remote spectrums where it comes to their approach to filmmaking and storytelling… Oh wait, am I commenting on Ain’t it Cool News or Pharyngula? Nevermind.. go Darwin!

  5. #5 Steve. P
    February 26, 2008

    skyotter beat me to it. I got the sense of “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” as well. Lets just hope this isnt a steaming pile of dogshit like that cinematic waste of 2 hours.

  6. #6 Rob Adams
    February 26, 2008

    I think that it’s pretty clear from the trailer that the story is intentionally over-the-top absurd. I doubt that Darwin’s presence serves any purpose other than achieving a jarring almost postmodern juxtaposition.

  7. #7 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    ditto, Steve. to paraphrase the new Harold and Kumar movie:

    “This is gonna be just like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Only it’s not gonna suck!”

    The Cell is a great movie to watch with the sound turned off, by the way

  8. #8 SEK
    February 26, 2008

    This sort of seems to go the same way, but boy, produced by David Fincher and Spike Jonze?

    They were just the money-men. The film’s been finished since 2005, screened at a few film festivals in 2006, but didn’t find distribution until Fincher and Jonze put their weight behind it.

  9. #9 negentropyeater
    February 26, 2008

    Please allow me to recommend a A GREAT PRO-ATHEIST MOVIE !

    if you want to see a beautiful movie, based on a true story, and with a great pro-atheist stance, you got to see “the diving bell and the butterfly”. If you’ve ever regretted that there aren’t many good movies that portray an Atheist as a good guy, a wonderul man, than you might recommend this movie to those who seem to doubt that it’s even possible.

    PZ, pleaaase if this shows nearby, or you can get hold of a DVD, watch it and I’m sure you’ll make a post about it. You will love it ! (and that’s something else than the Golden Compass).

    “Faced with a harrowing predicament, Jean-Do will use enormous courage and determination but, most of all, his soaring imagination to escape from his trap. Tapping into the limitlessness of his memories, fantasies, wit and wishes, he finds a way to race through experiences of wonder and grief, sex and love, fatherhood and childhood, faith and questioning, ecstasy and absurdity – and touches the very essence of what it is to be human.”

  10. #10 Clan/Rewired
    February 26, 2008

    mmm, should try this turning off the sound while watching the Cell… has it anything to do with Lopez wearing a skin tight piece of nothing maybe? Matthew Barney has this whole iconography with Minotaurs down a bit better though, at least, it’s not just eye-candy. But even if Jonze and Fincher were the “money men”, they still thought it interesting enough to link their names to. It’s not like they are extreme blockbuster producers, so if they were to invest in some expensive but pretentious flop, they would probably like to be able to stand behind their decision to back it up on artistic grounds.

  11. #11 Phil
    February 26, 2008

    So I looked this movie up on, and it says it was released in 2006, and has already won two awards. It does look a little cool, and hopefully good.

  12. #12 Ragnor
    February 26, 2008

    Since the girl is stealing medicine from the “M” shelf, I am guessing at some morphine tinged storytelling. Morphine + Charles Darwin = ?

  13. #13 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    played in festivals in ’06 and ’07, but IMDB says US release (limited) is March 8 2008

  14. #14 KC
    February 26, 2008

    I think Darwin was just included for sheer weirdness. Just the most random person you could think of to have along on an adventure film.

    Off topic, but what part of AK are you in, skyotter? (Asks a Fairbanksan).

  15. #15 Matt
    February 26, 2008

    Here’s a short clip with a little more Darwin. Not very helpful, but at least he looks “scientific” in his cataloguing.

  16. #16 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    KC: i’m in Juneau (*waves to Fairbanks*)

  17. #17 skyotter
    February 26, 2008

    i’m also reminded of that episode of Futurama about the sunken city of Atlanta:

    “Ted Turner, Hank Aaron, Jeff Foxworthy, the man who invented Coca Cola, the magician – all the other gods of our legends. Gods though they were – and also, Jane Fonda was there …”

    “The magician?”

  18. #18 decius
    February 26, 2008

    Remove LVB’s magnificent soundtrack and you are left with some post-modern imagery. I wouldn’t expect much from this one.

  19. #19 Sastra
    February 26, 2008

    Let’s see, it’s called “The Fall,” there’s a huge crucifix, locusts come out of someone’s mouth, nuns dance around in circles, there’s a human sacrifice — and the final question in the trailer is “Are you trying to save my soul?”

    Just a guess, but I wonder if “Charles Darwin” was included to make some sort of science vs. religion connection on the theme of sin and redemption? If so, I just hope he’s not there to represent the first one.

  20. #20 dcwp
    February 26, 2008

    Matt – wow. I never would have put that clip with the trailer. I had to check at the end of the clip to be sure I hadn’t accidentally clicked on a different movie. This should be interesting…

  21. #21 KC
    February 26, 2008

    @Skyotter: Ew. Juneau. It’s wet there! 😉 We’re just about to send some people through the area, on their way to field work in Prince of Wales isl. :}

  22. #22 K. Signal Eingang
    February 26, 2008

    All I have to say is, if Mark E. Smith isn’t involved, it’s not The Fall.

  23. #23 razimmermann
    February 26, 2008

    Beethoven missed his calling. He could have been the John Williams of his day. Oh, wait … no movies back then. Hmmm … the Andrew Lloyd Weber then.

  24. #24 MAJeff
    February 26, 2008

    Beethoven missed his calling. He could have been the John Williams of his day. Oh, wait … no movies back then. Hmmm … the Andrew Lloyd Weber then

    That was Mozart. Magic Flute=Phantom of the Opera.

  25. #25 rpenner
    February 26, 2008

    The story was just a trick to get you to do something for me.

    See, “teach the controversy” leads to addicts enticing children with stories about Charles Darwin and Governor Odious in order to get them into drug traficking.

    Therefore, DI promotes the drug culture by their policies and frequent use of the term “Darwinist” putting the man on a pedestal which he does not deserve. (The actual biologist pedestal for Darwin is a good deal lower, and tucked away in a corner, since evo-devo, epigenetics are far better lit today.)

  26. #26 Strider
    February 26, 2008


    Dude, where are you seeing movies? Can I come too?

  27. #27 razimmermann
    February 26, 2008

    That was Mozart. Magic Flute=Phantom of the Opera.

    Or Wagner. The Ring cycle = Lord of the Rings.

  28. #28 Brownian, OM
    February 26, 2008


    Dude, where are you seeing movies? Can I come too?

    Yeah, and creationists claim no one was around to witness the first life on Earth.

    Obviously PZ still lives back then, ’cause I’m sure movies haven’t been $5 since.

  29. #29 MacPato
    February 26, 2008

    I think Darwin was just included for sheer weirdness. Just the most random person you could think of to have along on an adventure film.

    No, no, if they were really ballsy it would have been, “There were five of them: The Indian, the Ex-Slave, an Explosives Expert, the Masked Bandit…and Abe Vigoda.”

    That movie I’d see.

  30. #30 BlueIndependent
    February 26, 2008

    The trailer makes it intriguing, but it IS pretty odd. A random CD appearance as (possible) protagonist? The costumes and effects make it look a bit overly fanciful.

    Personally I couldn’t stand The Cell. It was extremely thin and did little other than to allow the effects department to run wild coming up with perverse visuals to stun the audience (like a horse being sectioned alive with panes of glass), or sexual deviants hanging from hooks by their back skin. The whole time I was wondering WTF I was watching. Oh, and they had to throw in J-Lo’s obligatory invincible woman schtick at the end to bring revenge on the evil side of the antagonist’s mind.

    Which reminds me. This trailer seems to be following a similar character pattern. My take from it is this guy tells this elaborate story to this girl, and the fanciful stuff is actually happening in her little head. When he betrays her some way, the story falls apart. That’s what I got out of it. It’s another head games movie with interesting effects and costumes from this director. Who knows if it’ll be more than that.

  31. #31 Hank Fox
    February 26, 2008

    Charles Darwin? It must be an evil anti-Christian rant.

    I’m predicting some nice Catholic will ask all True Christians to boycott it.

    Looks like it’s going to have fantastic costuming, anyway.

  32. #32 Jim Lund
    February 26, 2008

    Check out “The Amazing Dr. Darwin : The Adventures of Charles Darwin’s Grandfather” by Charles Sheffield. It is a collection of short stories. I’m reading it now and so far it is pretty good.

  33. #33 Spalanzani
    February 26, 2008

    “I got the sense of “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” as well. Lets just hope this isnt a steaming pile of dogshit like that cinematic waste of 2 hours.”

    I feel morally obligated to point out that that awful movie was originally a rather good comic book by Alan Moore.

  34. #34 Geoff
    February 26, 2008

    This was at the Toronto Film Festival about two years ago. My mother saw this and she quite liked it. I could save you all $5 dollars and ask her.

  35. #35 ERV
    February 26, 2008

    No seriously, guys, what is the name of the song playing in the background? I played it a billion times when I played the cello, and I have since blocked the composer/title out of memory.

    Now its going to drive me nuts.

  36. #36 PZ Myers
    February 26, 2008

    You mean the 2nd movement of Beethoven’s 7th?

  37. #38 ERV
    February 26, 2008

    AH Thank you! Dont tell my old conductor 😛

  38. #39 MPW
    February 26, 2008

    Sure looks pretty and fun (and that line in the trailer is hilarious). But I wonder where director Tarsem Singh ripped off all his imagery for this one. He was being accused of shamelessly stealing stuff from painters, sculptors and other visual artists as far back as his “Losing My Religion” video for R.E.M., and I heard similar accusations about The Cell (which I never saw, for the record). The horse sectioned by glass that someone mentions above was, I’m pretty sure, a notorious piece in some postmodern art exhibit years ago. And in The Fall, I noticed a bald dude who looks like he’s expiring with birds flying out of his mouth, which would be one of my favorite images from the great and bizarre martial arts fantasy The East Is Red.

  39. #40 pradeep
    February 27, 2008

    A Tarsem Singh film shot in India. I recognize the Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikhri, Humayun’s Tomb, Jaipur Palace, and the blue city of Jodhpur. How cool!

    What I find more amazing is that PZ can see movies at his place for $5.00. If this film ever came out in our little town, it would be at least $9.50 to see it.

  40. #41 Jeremy
    February 27, 2008

    $9.50!? That’s cheap. My cinema runs around $14, and that’s with a discount.

    Fat chance of this coming to Japan, methinks. bleh. We just got The Golden Compass, though from what everyone says, for the price I’ll skip it. Though warrior polar bears would be cool.

    The site Matt links to says the movie’s ‘ambientada’ in 1920s Hollywood. If my Spanish doesn’t fail me, that means it’s set in that time period. Am I missing something, or did I get something wrong?

  41. #42 blf
    February 27, 2008

    If I were selling tickets to a movie, and a Giant Land Squid marched up and wanted a ticked, I’d probably give him 5$ with his complementary ticket just to go away. Quickly. Whilst hiding under the counter.

  42. #43 Sigmund
    February 27, 2008

    I’m a little worried that Darwin is getting somewhat overexposed these days. Starring in ‘The Fall’ and ‘Expelled’ at the same time might go to his head. It won’t be long before he’s fighting with the paparazi while falling drunk out of a limo with Linday, Paris and Britney. Lets just hope he remembers to keep his pants on.

  43. #44 sharon
    February 27, 2008

    and the final question in the trailer is “Are you trying to save my soul?”

    Are you absolutely sure about that?

  44. #45 Carlie
    February 27, 2008

    What’s with the Princess Amidala headgear everywhere?
    Overall, looks intriguing.

  45. #46 apy
    February 27, 2008

    Going to the cinema here is at least a $25/person adventure. True I get the overpriced snacks, but I get the small. Not to mention the servicing sizes are huge. As I’ve grown up, things I’ve recognized from my youth look oddly smaller and unfamiliar, however the size of sodas at a cinema seem to grow with me.

  46. #47 Mechalith
    February 27, 2008

    I very rarely go to the movies here, which is sad because I enjoy it, but I’m already paying $9 and if it gets much higher I’m just going to start waiting for the DVD releases.

    (I’d probably go more if there were better movies too… why can’t they give the Chronicles of Prydain the LOTR treatment? *looks plaintive*)

  47. #48 MrSquid
    February 27, 2008

    This looks pretty, but I agree – too much like the Cell. I always add a tagline to that movie:
    “When Production Designers Attack”

    For more fun Darwin fiction, try to track down:
    “Pirates! In an adventure with Scientists”
    It’s a fun young reader book about Darwin falling in with a bunch of pirates after the Beagle sinks. It espouses the many virtues of piracy, such as massive quantities of grog and ham.

  48. #49 Ian
    June 5, 2008

    Morphine + Charles Darwin = Eve’s Solution?

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