User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 133 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 99 out of 133
  2. Negative: 16 out of 133

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  1. Aug 3, 2012
    This is one of my all time favorite movies because of it´s atmosphere that´s seems to be borrowed from a different universe. The film is so absurd, hilarious, astonishing, disgusting and all over chaotic it´s just BEST FANTASY MOVIE OF ALL TIME
  2. Nov 5, 2010
    If there is something to be said about Terry Gilliam, it's that he doesn't give a damn about trying to please his audience, and I love that about him. Depending on who you speak with, a director can be someone who must make a film that people would want to see or tell a story that they want to make. The former seems to be the most commonly accepted way of film making as large sums of money are at stake and it would be very risky to do so. Terry Gilliam's approach is one that I love and feel is a breath of fresh air in that he tells some very interesting stories. He has a way of capturing that sense of discovery and wonder that you (hopefully) got when you were a kid discovering something new. This movie to me is one of his ultimate expressions of this. The movie, in a nutshell, is about the immortal Doctor Parnassus (Christopher Plummer) and his duels of faith (not religious, but in the virtues of humanity) with the devil (played by an awesome Tom Waits). It involves many flashbacks from when Parnassus was young and details how he become who he is, all the while showing the daily trials and tribulations he and his traveling carnival face as they travel about London. The story is very complex and does require attention to be paid to what is being said, and their morality cannot be judged based on the characters actions as easily as some films. Things are pretty much not what they may seem at all times, and things twist and warp as the story develops further, leaving you sometimes confused. The writing is amazing, with many well written and delivered lines by the cast. They all deliver equally good performances and though I have a hard time finding a favorite, I would have to say Verne Troyer as Anton (who is someone to be watched in the future) and Tom Waits as the Devil where some of my favorites. Heath Ledger gives an excellent performance and as much as I liked him in the Dark Knight, I feel that his performance in Imaginarium is a bit more subtle, but still very interesting. That being said, The Imaginarium is definitely a favorite of mine, but I may be biased as I like Terry Gilliam's style as a director, as well as his choice of actors/actresses. He pours a lot of heart into his movies and as self indulgent as some people say his movies are, I would rather watch his movies more than any other director. Expand
  3. Feb 27, 2012
    Terry Gilliam always delivers the film that he wants to make rather than something that is instantly appealing or even commercially viable. For each Time Bandits or Brazil there is a Brothers Grimm, but even his least successful productions are superior to the continuous stream of turgid super hero tie-ins and remakes that have filled cinemas in recent years. Parnassus has an excellent cast who act their socks off. It's hard to single any one of them out, although it is a pleasure to see Christopher Plummer centre stage, and the combination of the "Tony" actors (Ledger, Depp, Farrell, and Law) shine through. The plot is arguably a little simple, but with the way it weaves between imaginary worlds and fascinating characters this is probably for the best. And what richly painted worlds and characters they are, with the irony that the most fascinating element is the Imaginarium itself - a Victorian era anachronism touring the back streets of modern London. The special effects are truly special due to the level of art that has gone into them rather than just the capabilities of a team of programmers. Modern SFX have become such a continuous drive of "bigger and better with more pixels" that many directors have lost sight of the fact that they are meant to be "special". Look, a bigger explosion, with more colours! Or a bigger robot, a bigger spaceship, a bigger, more impossible car chase.It has reached a point where SFX have reached saturation - completely ridiculous things are now mundane. Parnassus SFX focus on the detail, the minutiae, the art. And much of it is big, but that's not what makes it clever. What makes if clever is the fact that Gilliam decided that a "magic" mirror just needed a piece of plastic with a hole cut in it. Sometimes it's knowing when not to..... Expand
  4. Mar 14, 2012
    What you expect from the trailer is exactly what you get: a visually appealing, old-fashioned and stylish film about a magic world that can be accessed through a mirror. While the first half of the film takes you through the discovering of this world and the nature of the different characters, the second part is full of dark/epic elements. It's up to you to decide if the devil finally got to destroy Parnassus' life. Expand
  5. Jul 10, 2013
    this movie is amazing one of the best fantasy,etc,movies,i ever seen....
    don-t feed the haters and trols...

    this movie is amazing one of the best fantasy,etc,movies,i ever seen....
    don-t feed the haters and trols...

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Olly Richards
    There are thrilling flashes of Gilliam getting back to top form here. A scrappy movie with more ideas than it can control, but one born out of a passion and determination that are wholly infectious.
  2. The film is neither intelligent enough nor silly or grotesque enough to become a lasting favorite.
  3. 50
    He can follow any train of thought, so he does, and it’s no surprise when the trains run out of steam.