An unsurprisingly bonkers, insanely daring, deeply weird Gothic fairytale told through hilariously literal, often delightfully traditional musical numbers -- as evident by Leos Carax's thanks in the credits, it's like an Edgar Allan Poe story told by Stephen Sondheim, a strange dark fable presented on the most over-the-top, theatrical canvas possible. Adam Driver, spending much of the film shirtless, has multiple scenes where he shadowboxes in his big green bathrobe, lit cigarette dangling from his mouth and half-eaten banana in hand, as the movie locks into what makes him so unique as a performer while Driver audaciously commits to the movie's bizarre, alienating vision. It's certainly one of Driver's signature performance; and almost definitely Simon Helberg's best performance, while Marion Cotillard is probably overqualified here, but needless to say, as enchanting as ever. Your mileage may vary on being on this movie's wavelength (this is the guy who brought us Holy Motors, after all), but I had an absolute blast -- considering it as a bombastic "night at the opera" sort of experience, a movie so inherently designed to be seen in a theater that it's a genuine shame the strong majority of its views will be on Prime Video -- with an electrifying opening number that gave me goosebumps within seconds, the movie soars through its perverse, carnivalesque universe until stripping back all the carefully orchestrated facade as it arrives at its sobering, somber, and stealthily tragic coda. It's a resoundingly singular work that could only be sprung from the imagination of a madman, the sort of thing that's increasingly becoming a rarity, but here, plays as a puzzling, unnerving, astonishing triumph. Most people will definitively hate this. I absolutely loved it.

🎶 She’s out of this world! 🎶

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