The Terry Gilliam Collection

The Terry Gilliam Collection
One must wonder: what goes into determining which films make the "Collection" cut? After all, it's a collection, not of anything more specific than the director's work. Alliance has decided that we shall receive Time Bandits, Monty Python's Meaning of Life, Brazil, 12 Monkeys, Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas and Brothers Grimm. No Jabberwocky, Baron Munchausen, Fisher King, Tideland or The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus. It paints a portrait of a wildly eccentric and massively visionary artist over many of the most tumultuous artistic highs and business lows of a career riddled with them. Through the special features, we basically see Gilliam invent the "Making of" documentary out of fear that things will go as horribly wrong with 12 Monkeys, as they did on Munchausen. And they do. "The Hamster Effect" feels like a precursor to Lost in La Mancha, the documentary tracking the disintegration of Gilliam's first attempt at filming The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, which would have been a welcome addition, and which is almost as not directed by Gilliam as Meaning of Life. If one just watches the films, it's a great collection of some of Gilliam's finest work. Time Bandits, Brazil, 12 Monkeys and Fear and Loathing remain his most vital pictures and Meaning of Life is an undisputed classic. Brothers Grimm is a failed curiosity, most notable for Matt Damon's atrocious hair and a nearly brilliant Heath Ledger performance sideswiped by a weakly scripted, meandering plot. It was the beginning of a promising working relationship tragically derailed while filming Parnassus. Gilliam's creative rejuvenation and status as a cursed and blessed filmmaker come to a head with that picture; it's a shame it's omitted. The question is: do you wait and hope he breaks the curse with Quixote round two and that a more comprehensive collection will follow or just enjoy these select fantastic flights of contentious fancy Gilliam has gifted the world with? Whatever the holes in your collection dictate is the answer. Some essential VHS upgrades have been made to mine. (Alliance)