Monkey Reviews

Through the Eyes of A Chimp

Monkey Reviews
August 27, 2006
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“Dear Wendy” …. love the Chimp

If you ever wondered what it would look like for a Pacifist to immerse themselves in guns, “Dear Wendy” is a telling fable. I think it is right to dub this movie a fable as it moves in and out of reality and fantasy quite seamlessly; yet it’s not so much fantasy as we usually think of it (i.e. traveling to different dimensions), perhaps “modern day parable” captures it’s uniqueness. Half way through the movie my mind kept recalling Dogville, interestingly the closing credits show Lars Von Trier as the director/producer. Like Dogville, and I’m assuming Manderlay, Dear Wendy captures small town America; the fears and the small mindedness that make up it’s dark underbelly.

It also captures the story of the classic “outsider” and how the stranger in society manages to get by, not always, however, with a picket-fence, baseball and apple pie ending. Again I was reminded of Dogville. Maybe it’s because Lars himself is an outsider to American culture (a Dane that has apparently never set foot on American soil) that he can make such an honest and in-depth view of this complex, Jeckel/Hyde-like country. Despite his distance and geographical detachment, he brings to the movie compassion and insight that isn’t cold and aloof but rather graces us with exactly that: grace-filled judgment.

Rating: Aesthetically unique, great music (thanks to the “Zombies”) and a feast for the mind. The part of him never being in America has created quite a stir among the critics. Only a few are able to look past this fact; most critics approach his movies defensively, ready to write him off. Personally I’d see anything he makes.