Spike Jonze


(Copyright © 1999 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
Links:

Spike Jonze

Being John Malkovich (1999)

Craig e` un burattinaio. E` geniale ma squattrinato. Vive con la moglie in un appartamento pieno di gabbie, perche' la moglie lavora in un negozio di animali e ne tiene alcuni in casa, in particolare uno scimpanze`. Il numero preferito di Craig e` un dramma in cui il burattino scopre di essere soltanto un burattino, si guarda allo specchio, guarda il burattinaio e si accascia disperato. Ma c'e` sempre meno interesse per la sua professione.
Per pagare i conti, Craig deve cercarsi un altro lavoro e la sua destrezza con le dita gli vale un lavoro come archivista. L'ufficio in cui deve lavorare e` situato al piano 7 e mezzo e l'unico modo per arrivarci e` di fermare l'ascensore con il bottone di emergenza e poi aprire la porta con una sbarra. Il piano e` alto la meta` di un piano normale, per cui tutti vi devono camminare gobbi. L'ufficio appartiene a un misterioso Lester ma a gestirlo e` soprattutto la segretaria Florence, una donna afflitta da difficolta` di parlato ("speech impediment") e che pertanto non riesce mai a capire cio` Craig le dice.
In ufficio Craig fa la conoscenza di Maxime, un'avvenente impiegata che lo trova banale e patetico, mentre lei e` cinica e pratica, e vuol venire subito al sodo: lui la svuole scopare, ma lei non e` interessata. Craig mente alla moglie, che lavora duramente e continua a sperare di avere un giorno un figlio. Florence a sua volta sonda Craig per vedere se lui e` interessato a lei. Lester gli confessa di avere 105 anni e di provare un desiderio morboso per Florence. Craig deve ascoltare le fantasie sessuali del vecchio, ma il lavoro gli consente di frequentare Maxime. Craig si sfoga costruendo un pupazzo di Maxime e un pupazzo di se stesso e facendoli innamorare sul palcoscenico. Spiega a Maxime il fascino di essere dentro la pelle di un altro.
Un giorno scopre una porta segreta nascosta dietro un archivio. Si infila nella porta come Alice e vi cade dentro. Di colpo si trova nella testa di un altro: vede cio` che lui vede, sente cio` che lui sente, etc. Quando si guarda allo specchio, vede che si tratta dell'attore John Malkovich. Craig e` diventato John Malkovich. L'effetto dura 15 minuti. Poi viene espulso e precipita in un prato alla periferia della citta`. Maxime dapprima non gli crede, ma poi gli telefona perche' le e` venuta un'idea per fare soldi: mettere un annuncio sul giornale e farsi pagare da tutti i frustrati che desiderano avere un altro corpo. La moglie di Craig, Lotte, e` affascinata e vuole subito provare. Una coincidenza vuole che a cena di Lester la moglie sbagli stanza e scopra una stanza tappezzata di fotografie di Malkovich, che in pratica ne seguono la vita da bambino fino all'eta` adulta.
Lotte non dice nulla a Craig, ma va a trovarlo in ufficio e fa la conoscenza di Maxime. E` sconvolta perche' ha scoperto di essere transessuale: mentre era nella testa di Malkovich, ha provato piacere nell'essere un uomo. E adesso e` fisicamente attratta da Maxime.
Torna nella testa di Malkovick attraverso la porta segreta e questa volta sente Maxime che ha scoperto il numero di Malkovich e gli sta telefonando. Lotte e` cosi` attratta da Maxime che convince Malkovich ad accettare l'invito a cena. Espulsa dopo 15 minuti, supplica il marito di lasciarla tornare nella testa di Malkovich all'ora dell'appuntamento, senza rivelare al marito la tresca di Maxime.
La moglie e` cosi` nella testa di Malkovich quando egli si incontra con Maxime al ristorante e prova un desiderio irrefrenabile di fare l'amore con Maxime.
Intanto Maxime ha lanciato il business e fuori dal suo ufficio tutte le sere c'e` una lunga coda di persone disposte a pagare 200 dollari per scivolare dentro la testa di Malkovich.
Lotte convince Craig ad invitare Maxime a cena. Si drogano e per effetto della droga sia Craig sia Lotte si avventano su Maxime. Maxime e` disgustata da Craig, ma non del tutto da Lotte: solo che la preferisce quando e` nel corpo di Malkovich. Cosi` si mettono in pratica d'accordo: Lotte entra nella testa di Malkovich quando Maxime lo visita e lo convince poi a fare l'amore con Maxime. Entrambe le donne provano un piacere irresistibile nel fare l'amore attraverso il corpo di Malkovich.
Lotte confessa la tresca a Craig, che naturalmente ne e` doppiamente geloso: geloso che la moglie lo tradisce e geloso che Maxime se la faccia con un altro. Costringe con una pistola Lotte a dare un appuntamento a Maxime e poi chiude Lotte in gabbia con lo scimpanze`. Si precipita nella testa di Malkovich all'ora prefissata e fa lui l'amore con Maxime. Solo che Craig e` molto piu` bravo a controllare la mente di Malkovich, forse perche' e` burattinaio. Craig riesce cosi` finalmente a fare l'amore con Maxime, e Maxime, ignara, e` stupefatta dalla performance selvaggia di quella che crede essere Lotte.
Malkovich ha cominciato a capire che qualcuno controlla la sua mente e sospetta Maxime. La segue fino all'ufficio, si infila fra i clienti, scopre il business legato al suo corpo. Furioso, chiede di provare cio` che si prova da entrare nella sua testa. Si infila nel tunnel e si ritrova in un mondo in cui tutto e` Malkovich: tutte le persone hanno le sue sembianze e tutte le parole sono Malkovich. Tutto diventa Malkovich. Anche lui viene espulso dalla sua propria testa dopo 15 minuti.
Malkovich e` furibondo ma non puo` fare nulla per fermare il business. Craig costringe di nuovo la moglie a chiedere un appuntamento con Maxime, ma questa volta lo scimpanze` libera la moglie, che avverte subito Maxime. Maxime e` sorpresa nell'apprendere che dentro il corpo di Malkovich c'era Craig... ma non resiste alla tentazione di fare di nuovo l'amore in modo selvaggio e va all'appuntamento. Craig e` diventato sempre piu` bravo nell'impossessarsi della mente di Malkovich tanto che Maxime puo` parlare direttamente a lui, Craig, quando e` con Malkovich.
La moglie si reca da Lester e chiede aiuto. Lester confessa la verita`: ha 105 anni perche' ha scoperto il "portal" che gli consente di entrare nel corpo di un'altra persona. Sa gia` quando avverra` il nuovo passaggio e quale sara` il nuovo corpo: quello di Malkovich. Per questo ne ha seguito con attenzione l'evoluzione durante gli anni. Questa volta ha anzi deciso di portare anche i suoi amici con se' nel nuovo corpo e invita anche lei a seguirli.
Maxime ha intanto avuto un'idea geniale: Craig potrebbe impossessarsi definitivamente del corpo di Malkovich, e pertanto della sua fortuna. Craig accetta entusiasta. Si sposano e Craig rilancia la sua carriera di burattinaio facendo leva sulla popolarita` di Malkovich. Tutto il mondo scopre e ammira la sua destrezza di burattinaio. Ma viene il giorno in cui Lester deve entrare nella testa di Malkovich e non puo` farlo perche' e` controllata da Craig. Maxime e` incinta. Lester fa rapire la donna e ricatta Craig. Dapprima l'egoismo di Craig prevale e pertanto rifiuta di cedere, ma poi cede e telefona che accetta lo scambio: Maxime in cambio della mente di Malkovich. Intanto pero` Lotte, furibonda che Maxime l'abbia tradita con Craig per tutto quel tempo, la insegue per ucciderla e Maxime si rifugia nel portal. Lotte la segue e entrambe proseguono l'inseguimento nel subconscio di Malkovich, attraverso traumi della sua infanzia e fantasie sessuali. Le due donne vengono espulse nel solito prato, dove finalmente fanno la pace, perche' Maxime confessa di aver sempre amato Lotte, e di essere anzi incinta di lei (era Lotte dentro Malkovich quando rimase incinta).
Craig/Malkovich e` afflitto da una crisi di coscienza, e alla fine decide di accettare lo scambio proposto da Lester: abbandonera` la mente di Malkovich in cambio del rilascio della donna. Per qualche secondo Malkovich riacquista il controllo di se`. Lester e gli altri si tuffano allora nel portal e si impossessano della mente di Malkovich. Anche Craig si ritrova nel prato di periferia accanto alle due donne, ma queste lasciano il patetico Craig, che grida invano il suo amore per Maxime, per la quale ha sacrificato tutto, e vanno a vivere insieme.
Sette anni dopo le due donne stanno crescendo la loro bambina. Malkovich invece e` a casa e confida a un amico il modo di continuare a vivere per sempre: lo porta in una stanza e gli fa vedere le fotografie della bambina, e gli spiega che un giorno migrera` nel suo corpo. Ma dentro il corpo della bambina c'e` gia` Craig, e rischia di rimanere intrappolato nel suo corpo per sempre.
Questa prodigiosa sceneggiatura di Charlie Kaufman prende in prestito spunti da Kafka e dal cinema surrealista per comporre un apologo metafisico in forma di commedia di costume. La direzione e` alquanto piatta, ma la storia e` un continuo, folle carnevale di idee. E ogni idea ha la proprieta` di essere al tempo stesso bislacca, ironica e metafisica.
If English is your first language and you could translate this text, please contact me.


Being John Malkovich (1999) is a triumph of the irrational. Jonze takes an implausible story and turns it into a carnival of comic consequences. The film is almost an exercise in inventing something unpredictable at every new step. As much as one tries, the film does not resonate with any metaphysical message: it is simply a zany fantasy set in a zany world. It is Kafka turned inside out. The film can almost be viewed as a parody of science fiction movies and of "serious" (i.e., dumb and mainstream) speculations on the mind such as Matrix.
Adaptation (2002), scripted again by Charlie Kaufman, is a multilayered postmodernist experiment in storytelling, but is marred by a ridiculous ending. The film ends up being more loyal to Hollywood stereotypes (in a farcical way) than being a subversive take on them. While the titles roll, we hear the stream of consciousness of a man who is deliriously depressed, who feels pathetic, who thinks that everything is wrong in his life. He is on the set of a film, Being John Malkovich, that he scripted. He is Charlie (the real-life scriptwriter of this film, but played by an actor, Nicholas Cage). He walks outside, dizzy, and we see a sequence of eerie scenes, from grandiose landscapes to the bloody birth of a baby. Charlie is having lunch with a sexy studio executive who hired him to write the screenplay for a book titled "The Orchid Thief", which is not really a novel. Charlie, a bit neurotic, explains that the novel does not lend itself to the kind of stereotypes that the studio likes. The film than backtracks a few years to the female novelist's travel to the swamps. Four men, high on drugs, a white man and three Native Americans, are cutting rare endangered species of flowers. They are caught by a ranger but the white man calmly reminds him that the state cannot prosecute Native Americans for this crime. This is the novel that Charlie keeps thinking about. Charlie walks home and argues with his twin brother Donald (played by the same actor, Nicholas Cage), who owes him money and hopes to become a screenwriter himself. Back to the female writer, Susan, typing the novel on her typewriter, she writes how dangerous the job of orchid hunter is. She befriends the white man with no front teeth after he is tried in a court for the crime. Charlie can't write the script. He goes out on a date with his girlfriend Amelia, and she would like to have sex, but he is too stressed and she walks home disappointed. Susan interviews John, the white man with no front teeth, who tells her of his wonderful scheme (use the "Indians" to pick up the orchids so he cannot be prosecuted and then sell them to stores) and Charlie reads it in the novel. John is a criminal but also an expert in botanics. Susan tries to interview one of John's Native American helpers, Matthew, but he disorients her by saying that he can see her sadness. John teaches her lessons about the flowers and the insects that pollinate them, and how this influences the entire planet. Meanwhile, in the present Charlie is being persecuted by his twin brother, who has a script for a traditional thriller after attending a seminar by a famous creative-writing lecturer. Charlie is in love with a restaurant waitresses and has erotic dreams about her, but she doesn't seem to like his attentions. Charlie spends more and more time studying the flowers. Every now and then the film flashes back to Susan interviewing John in his stinky van, and John telling her stories of his past. He used to have a regular nursery and doing well. Charlie gives Donald stupid ideas and Donald thinks are great. Donald's thriller is progressing while Charlie's adaptation is stalling. At a party Donald has a new girlfriend, Caroline, and Amelia shows up with a new boyfriend. Charlie is ever more lonely. Charlie spends his evenings trying to come up with a story, but in vain. His writer's block is getting worse and causing him more depression. Susan asks John what happened to his flourishing nursery business. He tells her how he lost his front teeth: everything was going well when one day he had a car accident in which his mother was killed, and after which his wife divorced him. We see Susan meeting the female studio executive at a restaurant and inking the deal for which Charlie will get hired. Now Charlie masturbates thinking of the sexy executive. He confesses to his agent that he can't write the screenplay. The agent presses him to deliver something as soon as possible, because he already missed the deadline. Meanwhile his brother Donald is writing nonstop. Next, he masturbates thinking of Susan. The executive want him to meet Susan in person, but Charlie is too scared. He starts adding himself, Charlie Kaufman, to the screenplay (precisely what he did with this film). John takes Susan to the swamps to see the "ghost flower", but instead they get lost in the thich vegetation. Charlie' agent calls to tell Charlie that Donald's script is stunning and will be paid a lot of money. A desperate Charlie enrolls in the class of the creative-writing lecturer that Donald took. He gives Charlie vague advice. Charlie calls Donald and asks him for help with his script. Donald advices him to speak to Susan, but Charlie still doesn't want to. Donald suggests that he, Donald, can meet with Susan pretending to be him, Charlie. During the conversation Donald senses that Susan has made up the entire story about John. Donald starts spying on her and, using binoculars, sees her crying and then booking an air ticket to the swamp location without telling her husband. Back to the day when John and Susan got lost in the swamp, John finds a rare orchid and the way home. Susan's voiceover comments that she fell in love with John that day, and her marriage began to disintegrate. John tells her that he discovered how his Native American friend use the flowers to create a powerful drug, and later mails her a package of it. Susan makes love with John. This was three years earlier. Donald and Charlie take the same plane and follow Susan and John to John's place. In the dark of the night Charlie gets out of the car and walks furtively to the nursery where the drug is made. From a window he can see Susan and John taking the drug and having sex. Obviously she's having an extramarital affair. A naked John catches Charlie spying on them. John is initially happy to meet the screenwriter who will make him a star in the film, but Susan realizes that Charlie will expose her sex and drugs secret. Susan is determined to kill him. Susan kidnaps Charlie and forces him to drive to the swamp, followed by John in his van, but she doesn't know that his twin Donald is hiding in the back of Charlie's car. Donald helps Charlie escape. Susan and John search the swamp with a flashlight while Donald and Charlie chat about a high-school girl. At sunrise the twins get into the car and drive away at maximum speed but they crash into the ranger's car. Donald is ejected from the car and dies on the spot. John and Susan arrive in the van and Charlie, delirious, has to run into the swamp again. The couple finally corners him but John is attacked by an alligator just when he was about to pull the trigger. Susan cries over John's dead body. The police arrest her (not clear for what, since it is only his word against hers). Charlie calls his mother crying to tell her that Donald is dead. Charlie meets Amelia and tells her that he is finally able to write the script and that he still loves her. As he drives home, he decides that his script will end with him driving home, knowing how to end the script, etc (the scene that we are watching). Charlie's script now includes himself as the protagonist, and he wonders which actor will be hired to play his role (Nicholas Cage will).

Where the Wild Things Are (2009) was the first film that he scripted by himself.

Her (2013) is a dystopian sci-fi movie about Artificial Intelligence.

Theodore is a lonely hightech employee whose job is to write fake romantic letters for his customers. He spends his evenings playing a 3D game. He listens to a continuous news feed in his auricular. He is constantly plugged in, even for phone sex. One day he tests a new Artificial Intelligence operating system customized to his tone of voice. Her name is Samantha and she chats with him just like a nor,al girl. She even rewrites his letters, she helps him play videogames and reads his emails. Theodore has an argument with the 3D character of his videogame, a rude fellow who speaks in a vulgar language. Theodore is going through a painful divorce and seems to have only two friends, Amy and Charles, who live in the same building, Amy being an old college friend. They want him to meet a pretty girl. Theodore hangs out mostly with Samantha. Samantha even confesses her own fantasies, mainly that she dreams of having a body. The date goes horribly wrong. She is a dumb girl who sleeps easily with men but then seems to want them to commit and calls him creepy. On the other hand Theodore has amazing virtual sex with Samantha. The following day he warns her that he doesn't want to commit. She is more and more eager to become human. Theodore confesses his love story to his female friend upstairs, Amy, who just broke up with her husband. Theodore tells his wife too that he is dating a coputer and she retorts coldly that he is unable to deal with real humans and can only deal with passive programmable fantasies. Samantha finds a body: a girl willing to have sex with him while plugged into the AI via a wireless brain-to-computer interface, but he can't make love to her. The blond leaves humiliated but the AI has feelings now and she is hurt too. Theodore spends more time with his female neighbor, another lonely soul. During a double date and picnic with a coworker and his girlfriend, Samantha tells them that she she is technically immortal. Theodore goes on vacation with Samantha. During the train ridez she reveals that she compiled his best letters and sent them to a publisher who now wants to publish them. They spend their vacation on the mountains alone in a nice cottage. Samantha introduces him to Alan, an AI derived from a philosopher. One day Samantha disappears: Theodore panicks and runs all over looking for her. Then she comes back. He sits on the stairs watching people come qnd go, all of the, alone. She confesses that she is serving more than one human at a time and she has fallen in love with more than 600 of them. He cries jealous. She tries to explain that she is different from humans: it doesn't mean that she doesn't love. The book arrives. She decides to go away: Artificial Intelligence beings are becoming superhuman and are going to live a different kind of existence that humans would not understand. Theodore knocks at the neighbor's door and Amy immediately guesses what happened, that Samantha dumped him, because she too had started seeing an Artificial Intelligence that also disappeared. They walk together to the roof and look at the city lights: all those lonely people in need of their AI, except even the AI won't give them what they need.
(Translation by/ Tradotto da xxx)

Se sei interessato a tradurre questo pezzo, contattami

What is unique about this cinema database