LOST  IN  LA  MANCHA   - A  Narada   Film Review

   A detail of 
   Don Quixote   
    poster that 
    never was
   Don Quixote
lost In La Mancha    -Fulton/Pepe - US/UK

  Reviewed 03 Jan 03      Lost In La Mancha is an overlong non-movie of the non-making of the would-be movie 'Who Killed Don Quixote?'.   It outlines the struggles director Terry Gilliam and team had while attempting to shoot in Spain.  They battled their own bad planning efforts, the horrendous weather, ill health, and of course, each other.   While Lost In La Mancha had its occasional meaningful moments, the Fates precluded their chances of ever completing the film.   And forgive me if I sound a little cynical, but after having read Terry Gilliam's review of Fellini's 8 1/2, which, coincidentally, is about a movie crashing down around a director, one can't hlep but feel that Gilliam might have been trying to live out the fantasy.
       Hey, disasters, both 'force majeure' and 'human' do happen.  But does this give adequate grist for the making of a movie?   If Lost In La Mancha is any indication, the answer can only be a resounding NO.  One suspects that Lost In La Mancha was an attempt to jump into the pool with other "behind the scenes" genre films - and who can blame them for trying?   Well, I guess it depends on the try, really.
       When all was said and done, there was no way to put a spin on 'failure' that even came close to justifying the film.  Lost In La Mancha was a self-centered effort - had they done more with the screen tests (Jean Rochefort's was marvellous) and the making of what little of the film they did shoot. and less of the frailties of the crew's personalities, they would have at least prevented us, the audience, from wishing the film within the film, Who Killed Don Quixote?, would fail sooner rather than later, and that the film Lost In La Mancha would come to a mercifully expeditious end.  Fulton and Pepe, and even Gilliam himself have proven that while 'nothing succeeds like success', it is just as true that nothing fails like failure.
      Enduring Line or Phrase:  "It's got a lot of potential for chaos...

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