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(9) The Fountain



Director: Darren Aronofsky

Writers: Darren Aronofsky

The Line: “All these years, all these memories, there was you. You pulled me through time.”



What It’s About:

In the year 1500, a conquistador searches for the elusive tree of life to free his queen from bondage. In the year 2000, a medical researcher searches for a cure to save his dying wife. In the year 2500, a space traveler travels light years away towards a dying star to resurrect his late wife. All three stories eventually intertwine.


Why It’s Coming Along:

I have a confession to make… The first time I saw The Fountain, I almost shut it off at the thirty-minute mark. It seemed like such an unintelligible mess and I couldn’t understand why Hugh Jackman was traveling through space in a bubble. Yes, you read that right, a bubble. Then I got to the scene with Hugh Jackman and Rachel Weisz sitting on the roof, peering through a telescope at a dying star in the night sky. Just like that, the light switch flicked on, everything made sense, and I realized I just might be watching one of the best movies I’d ever seen.



In my opinion, watching The Fountain is like taking a master class in filmmaking. It’s daring, splitting the narrative into three different time periods while utilizing the same actors. It’s heavy on symbolism (the movement from darkness to blinding light throughout, the recurring circles) and reliant on setups and payoffs (the tattoos, the tree, and the dying star). The performances are near perfect (Hugh Jackman is never better), the emotion is palpable, and the editing and photography are something to admire. And let’s not leave out the score… Clint Mansell is a god. This is the kind of movie I want to make someday, the summit that I strive to reach. I’m thankful that I kept watching past that 30-minute mark. I’m sorry, Mr. Aronofsky, for ever doubting you.


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Nine down, sixteen more to go… It’s that time again for you, my faithful readers, to sound off.

What did you think of The Fountain?

What is your favorite movie of all time?

Who is your favorite composer?


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(Note: I do not own the trailer or any of the images above.)

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2 Responses to “All The Little Things – Part 9: The Fountain”

  1. Sounds pretty cool. I’ll have to check this one out too.

  2. Paul Wanio, Ph.D. says:

    I love “The Fountain” and look forward to seeing it again. I can’t imagine having a “favorite” movie in the same way I could not imagine having one academy award for all movies and categories. Regarding director, Darren Aronofsky, when I saw “The Tree of Life,” I was so moved during the first half that I thought, “all the movies I’d ever seen (considerable number) were just preparing me for this and if I’d never see another movie, I would now be satisfied.” I wondered what could follow something so marvelous and well-done… then, it fell apart into an incredible disappointment. The acting was exceptional, but unlike with “The Fountain,” I left feeling very unfulfilled and that Aronofsky simply could not offer an ending on par with his beginning. He opened the mystical box marvelously, but could not close it. There were great moments and scenes, but it ultimately does not work. If only I could take that incredible beginning of The Tree of Life and create (or have him create) a new second half. I’ll watch it again, I’m sure, and see if it “clicks.”

    I see many movies and love good film making. One movie that stands out for me is “Departures” that won Best Foreign Film a few years ago. One of the most disturbing movies I have ever seen was “A.I. – Artificial Intelligence” (Kubrick/Spielberg). Never do I feel upset after seeing a movie two weeks later. With A.I., I did. I believe it was unpopular because it “hits home” at a level people do not want to experience regarding the meaning of life, death, purpose, spirituality, cruelty, our future, love, “who we really are,” etc. – Paul

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