Being John Malkovich

Being John MalkovichBBBB.5

(out of 5)


Brilliant comedy that sets audience expectation on its ear. An office temp () finds a portal in his filing room that leads into the mind of  and subsequently dumps him onto the New Jersey Turnpike five minutes later. His wife () is a frizzy-haired animal lover who falls in love with Cusack’s new co-worker  (in a bitingly brilliant performance) despite the fact that he had his eye on her first.  He and Keener team up to turn voyages into Malkovich’s mind into a moneymaking scheme, putting in motion a plot of such enormous lunacy that even if you don’t like it, you have to admire screenwriter Charlie Kaufman’s audacity. Spike Jonze’s direction is consistently off-the-wall, and amazingly enough Malkovich gives his very best performance as a fictional version of himself; the scene where he enters his own mind and experiences millions of different Malkoviches is pure genius (though slightly less genius than the sequence where the ladies enter the labyrinth of his subconscious).  The film never gets too engrossed in its own gimmicks, however, telling a very effective story about people’s need to control others and see the world from behind a hidden perspective.


Astralwerks, Gramercy Pictures, Propaganda Films, Single Cell Pictures

USA, 1999

Directed by

Screenplay by

Cinematography by

Produced by , ,

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by


Academy Awards:  1999

Golden Globe Awards:  1999


BeingJohnMalkovich

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