The Holy Mountain

The Holy Mountain ★★★★½

Sure, there are some dubious ethics at play here w/r/t the use of animals and ableism in the casting, but the film somehow managed to make me look past those and see the greater picture, and what a glorious picture this is. While watching it, I had no idea that the Master was played by Jodorowsky himself, but when I saw his credit at the end it made such fantastic sense, as did the fact that he also helped with the music, and lead the set and costume design as well. Knowing what I know about the man himself, I'm not exactly his greatest fan, but I'd be lying if I said he wasn't a seriously brilliant filmmaker. These images alone are all so wondrously composed and pointed, as are the ideas swirling around within them. Sometimes I came close to feeling that the symbolism was a bit too blunt, but I always later came to acknowledge that the bluntness was almost necessary, and overall works entirely in the film's favor. Thank god this film is as totally bonkers as it is, though--I was close to being worried that it wouldn't live up to the hype, but I'm oh so glad that it did. The soundtrack is also pretty fantastic, as is almost every single sequence here (I wasn't crazy about Berg's (Uranus) or the very end, but I didn't necessarily dislike either of them at all). That being said, this is all in all an amazingly scathing, delirious ride of a film. I'm not sure if I want to even go anywhere near El Topo, but as for the rest of Jodorowsky's output, color me wildly excited.