I didn’t even have to watch Vanilla Sky to have another “purpose of existence” mind-melt today. Every time I sit down and think about this movie, I always end up asking myself the same bloody question over and over. “How do I know there isn’t some David Aames in Tokyo, and I’m not just part of his complex, multi-layered lucid dream?” For those of you out there who think I’m a nut, I am. Good for you! You get a cookie! Ultimately, this is my desired end result of a movie. I want to be able to keep myself just thinking about a movie, without even watching it. I am so in love with these kinds of movies. I have no idea what to call them, and I’m glad. I keep thinking if what I love had a name, then it wouldn’t seem so special. If you’re wondering, I suppose it would be considered surrealism, in respect to how they are presented, but it would most likely be considered to be realism. These are the films that leave you wondering what the fuck just happened, causing you to rewind, thinking “We have just lost cabin pressure.” If I see a movie, I don’t demand that it have loose ends. Don’t get me wrong! Some of my favourite movies, are just good old fashioned stories, The Shawshank Redemption, Rounders, Animal Crackers, Rebel Without A Cause, Mystery Science Theatre 3000: The Movie. These are just plain entertaining. But to me, I just can’t refuse a good old mind-fuck! You know exactly what I’m talking about. You watch a movie, it’s great, then all of a sudden, they say one line, and the whole goddamn thing is more confusing than the California election process. ZING!
Now we get to the nitty gritty. Vanilla Sky is one of the classic movies that spins the audience’s world upside down. This movie poses not one but two questions. The first is a Matrix-like self-reflection. “Is my entire world fabricated to protect me from something? Am I another Truman Burbank?” Perhaps, it’s just my ADD oriented mind, but I can sit anywhere and just wrap my mind around the reasons of my validity. The second question is, “Do I even exist? Or am I part of a computer program built to glorify an artificial environment built for some small Russian girl living in Detroit? The possibilities are endless, and I love it. Films like Fight Club (with reference to the one line spinning the movie around) are so mind-fuckingly good, I am forced to watch them more than the recommended 30 times. A few other mind-fuckers are The Matrix, not so much now as compared to the day I walked out of the theatre, Donnie Darko, time travel is a dead giveaway for a good time, The Shining and one of personal favourites 2001: A Space Odyssey, although I’ve watched it so many times, and spent so many hours analyzing it, I’ve grown to the point where I actually understand every little nuance. Now don’t get frightened! If you’re a fan of comedies and want a good mind-fuck, they are out there but you need to find them. My favourite comedy of the Intellectual Intercourse nature, is Groundhog Day. While my friends and family, watch a funny story about finding love, I lost myself in thoughts such as “How do I know that this isn’t going on? Did my father once live the same day over and over once? It might describe his senility but truthfully, how would I ever know? If I he told me, would I think he was a loon?” You will just never know. And that’s the beauty of the whole concept! No matter how long you think about it, no matter who you talk to, what you read, or how long you live, you will never know. Until you ever meet Edmund Ventura in an elevator.