Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Holy Mountain - Jodorowsky (1973)

I have seen El Topo (1970, S&S #588), and I'd listened to this one's soundtrack (but didn't realize that Don Cherry was part of it), and I knew that John Lennon ponied up some dough for the production.

Produced by Allen Klein, plus rumors of George Harrison almost starring!

The Holy Mountain (La montaña sagrada)
dir. Alexandro Jodorowsky. 1973, USA.
Sight & Sound 2012: Critics' #588 / Directors' #224
Eye for Film movie review ... 366 Weird Movies essay
DVD from Amazon [Blu-Ray / Box-set]
No streaming...

***NSFW*** The Holy Mountain trailer (1973)

Patron: The cross was a mushroom. And the mushroom was also the Tree of Good & Evil. The philosophical stone of the alchemists was LSD. The Book of the Dead is a trip, and The Apocalypse describes a mescaline experience.

Lessee... my notes read: "SHOCKING (images)! NONSENSE (story)!!" Well, maybe not completely. More psychedelic mysticism than traditional surrealism - something to do with the ultimate quest for immortality, ego-death, metempsychosis and/or spiritual ascension. I noticed various symbols of the Tarot, but probably missed a lot and couldn't actually interpret the ones I did see... apparently, the main character was intended as The Fool. Along with some quite disturbing sights, the experience features a lot of fantastical visuals and design. This film definitely looks great, but watch your dosage.

A still from only the post-ritual chanting & shaving credits intro... already. I really can't explain much about the film, so have a bunch of intriguing pix.

Super cover reconstruction from Che cosa sono le nuvole!

Oops, most of these are from the Alchemist's Tower, where transformation occurs. O well, no Aztec horned toads battle, no significant animal trauma, always a lot of Jesuses, one carried by a Christopher, a pack of whores with a chimpanzee in tow (Chucho-Chucho)... and that's just in the first City of Iniquity section of the tripartite structure.

Why yes, primary colors do feature prominently.

Fortunately the exotic animals fare much better than goats, et cetera... I wrote a lot of stuff like "POE," "precious bodily fluids," and "the Philosopher's Load?"

A series of introductions to powerful forces of industry, art, planets, cosmetics, whatever. Pretty interesting, and often funny/satirical. The quest hits the road. Despite lederhosen and projectile-lactation-by-jaguar, the final section tends to drag a bit... until the big reveal.

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