The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
Imaginarium of doctor parnassus ver3.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byTerry Gilliam
Produced by
Written by
Starring
Music by
CinematographyNicola Pecorini
Edited byMick Audsley
Production
company
Distributed by
Release date
  • 22 May 2009 (2009-05-22) (Cannes)
  • 16 October 2009 (2009-10-16) (United Kingdom)
  • 11 November 2009 (2009-11-11) (France)
  • 25 December 2009 (2009-12-25) (Canada and USA)
Running time
123 minutes[1]
Country
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada
  • France
  • United States
Language
  • English
Budget$30 million[2]
Box office$64.4 million[3]

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus is a 2009 fantasy dramedy film directed by Terry Gilliam and written by Gilliam and Charles McKeown. The film follows a travelling theatre troupe whose leader, having made a bet with the Devil, takes audience members through a magical mirror to explore their imaginations and present them with a choice between self-fulfilling enlightenment or gratifying ignorance.

Heath Ledger, Christopher Plummer, Andrew Garfield, Lily Cole, Verne Troyer, and Tom Waits star in the film, though Ledger's death one-third of the way through filming caused production to be temporarily suspended.[4] Ledger's role was recast with Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell portraying transformations of Ledger's character as he travels through a dream world; the film marks Ledger’s final film performance. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus interweaves several plot lines in a nonlinear arrangement.

The film made its world premiere during the 62nd Cannes Film Festival, out of competition.[5] The film, which was cost $30 million to make, grossed more than $60 million in its worldwide theatrical release.

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus was nominated for two Academy Awards in the categories Best Art Direction (art directed by Dave Warren and Anastasia Masaro, and set decorated by Caroline Smith; lost to Avatar) and Best Costume Design (costumes designed by Monique Prudhomme; lost to The Young Victoria).[6]

Plot

Doctor Parnassus' theater troupe, which includes sleight of hand expert Anton, confidant Percy, and Parnassus' daughter Valentina, performs outside a London pub. The troupe's main attraction is a magical "Imaginarium", which offers whoever enters it a choice between difficult self-fulfillment or easy ignorance. After a drunkard is swayed to the latter, Parnassus says he has lost another one to Mr. Nick, a suave personification of the Devil. Mr. Nick reminds Parnassus that in three days Valentina turns 16, and her soul will be his. Hundreds of years ago Mr. Nick tricked Parnassus into gaining immortality, after making a wager similar to his current predicament.

As the troupe crosses a bridge, Anton spies someone hanging beneath it. They rescue the man, who spits out a golden pipe when revived. Claiming to have amnesia, he joins the troupe as a barker. Parnassus becomes despondent over the impending loss of his daughter. Mr. Nick visits Parnassus, revealing the hanging man is a disgraced philanthropist named "Tony". He offers Parnassus a wager: Valentina can stay with whoever wins five souls first.

Tony convinces the troupe to remodel the show into a more modern act. While performing, Tony lures a posh woman into the Imaginarium and follows her, where they enter a pastel-coloured dream-world representing the woman's imagination. The woman's imagination also changes Tony's face; upon discovering this, he dances elegantly with her, and they spy a motel run by Mr. Nick. Tony convinces the woman to take a gondola toward a pyramid alone, winning a soul for Parnassus. Tony falls back out of the Imaginarium, returning his face to normal; the woman exits shortly after and gives the troupe a vast sum of money. When three other women enter, each emerges elated; and thus Parnassus wins three more souls. Four Russian gangsters, to whom Tony owes money, are taken by Mr. Nick when they chase Tony into the Imaginarium. The score becomes four souls apiece.

With the bet nearing its end, Parnassus reveals Valentina's conception to her: after ageing from immortality, Parnassus made a new pact with Mr. Nick to be youthful again, in order to win the heart of a woman he loved. In exchange, any child he fathered would become Mr. Nick's property at age 16. Valentina attempts to run away, but Tony enters the Imaginarium to give his soul to Parnassus; in exchange, Parnassus must teach him the trance that powers the dream world. Valentina returns as he tries to enter the mirror, but Anton blocks them, having discovered that Tony is a fraudulent charity scammer, having stolen organs from Third World orphans and selling them to wealthy westerners.

Tony fights off Anton, pushes Valentina into the Imaginarium and joins her. Influenced by Valentina's desires, Tony's face changes again, and they float along a beautiful river in a gondola. After an impoverished child disrupts their boat trip, Tony transforms into a philanthropist speaking at a fundraiser. Anton, following the pair into the Imaginarium, appears as an outspoken child and exposes Tony as a fraud. A mob pursues Tony, and as the landscape disintegrates Anton confesses his love for Valentina before falling into a void.

Distraught and angry over her father's bargain and a lifetime of hiding of the truth from her, Valentina gives her soul to Mr. Nick. Disillusioned by the easy victory, Mr. Nick offers Parnassus to trade Valentina for Tony. Chased by the mob, Tony flees to a gallows, but Parnassus confronts him, holding Tony's pipe and a copy. Parnassus challenges Tony to choose which pipe is genuine. He chooses wrongly, inserts the copy in his windpipe, and is hanged. Mr. Nick keeps his word and Valentina is freed, but Parnassus is not told where she is, and is abandoned to wander in the Imaginarium.

Parnassus emerges years later, finding Valentina is married to Anton and they have a daughter. He watches them from outside a restaurant window, but when tempted to join them, he is stopped by Percy. Teaming up once more, Parnassus and Percy sell toy theatre replicas of the Imaginarium and the troupe on a street corner. Mr. Nick invites Parnassus over to him, but Percy puts an end to the temptation.

Other Languages
Türkçe: Dr. Parnassus