The City Of Lost Children

1995, Movie, R, 112 mins

Review

CITY OF LOST CHILDREN, THE | LA CITE DES ENFANTS PERDUS
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Definitely not for the kiddies -- the opening sequence could make your little darling shriek with terror at the mere mention of Santa Claus. The children of a dismal port city are disappearing one by one, kidnapped by Krank (Daniel Emilfork), an evil genius who's unable to dream. He's invented a machine designed to capture the sweet dreams of the innocent, but something's gone wrong and he's unable to extract anything from his victims but nightmares. Directors Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro (DELICATESSEN) have created a genuine phantasmagoria, and each of the film's stunning set pieces is more wildly imaginative than the last. (In the most spectacular, a young girl's tear sets off a Rube Goldberg-style chain of events that winds up grounding an ocean liner.) But once it becomes clear that this dark, immensely cluttered fantasy refers to nothing beyond itself -- Krank's dream machine, it would seem, equals cinema -- you may end up wishing for a little less show and a lot more substance. leave a comment

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