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Vanilla Sky

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***SPOILERS***

I have read reviews by Objectivists that hated this film saying it was incoherent and directionless. I haven't seen the film for a while but from only seeing it once at the theatre, the thing I was left with was how touched I was by the love story. Penelope Cruises' character (I forger her name in the movie) was the source of inspiration at two times in Tom Cruise's character's life; before the accident when he was motivated to change his lifestyle by taking his work more seriously and stop being a playboy and when he was in cryofreeze by gaining the courage to step out of his own fantasy world and into the very different world of the future "where his fortune wouldn't last long."

So I thought that at root this was the story of the redemption or the strengthening of a man's soul. I remember being very affected by this film. The final scene on the roof of the Skyscraper b/w Tom and Penelope was particularly touching, "We'll see each other in another life when we are cats." The whole concept that she could be such a deep value to him and inspire him to find courage a century after she was dead was so moving to me. Because of his love of his deepest value and how he drew strength from it, I was able to forgive whatever flaws the film had. I really liked it.

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*** SPOILERS ***

I was focused on a Primacy of Existence vs. Primacy of Consciousness interpretation. I view the act of dreaming as the closest aproximation to what a Primacy of Consciousness type of existence would be like to experience and live. I saw the character of Tom Cruise go through three basic stages throughout this movie. First, he was living the life of a playboy and the consequences ruined his life. Second, he is in his 'LucentDream' which slowly turns into a nightmare (Primacy of Consciousness). Third, he is faced with a choice: To accept the 'real' world or stay in his dream. He chooses the 'real' world (Rejects Primacy of Consciousness).

I agree that the love story was also very touching.

As for the reviews that say the story was "incoherent and directionless", I have to disagree. While this movie requires that you keep a constant level of focus and concentration, everything does fit together perfectly. There is a certain level of incoherence and directionlessness, but I think it was put there intentionally to concritize the fact that Tom Cruise is trying to piece back together his own memory and understand logic of a world where consciousness has primacy, his own.

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I liked VANILLA SKY because it shows that no matter what kind of world you live in (real or virtual), the basics of life - joy and sorrow - still exist. I am reminded of an old saying, "Heaven or hell starts from where your feet stands."

I have also seen ABRE LOS OJOS (OPEN YOUR EYES) - this is the original Spanish film which was remade into VANILLA SKY. Penelope Cruz plays the same character in both films. Since I've already seen the Tom Cruise version twice before I saw this, all the mystery & surprise are gone. However I still enjoyed it. What surprised me is that VANILLA SKY is essentially a shot by shot remake which even retains most of the original dialogue. Since both films are nearly identical with good acting all around, I would have to give VANILLA the edge, as it does have superior production values. Not to say that the original looks crappy, but it's not as visually impressive. If you had to pick only one version to see, then go VANILLA.

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As for the reviews that say the story was "incoherent and directionless", I have to disagree.  While this movie requires that you keep a constant level of focus and concentration, everything does fit together perfectly.  There is a certain level of incoherence and directionlessness, but I think it was put there intentionally to concritize the fact that Tom Cruise is trying to piece back together his own memory and understand logic of a world where consciousness has primacy, his own.

I agree. For a while, I though that the movie might suggest that there is no difference between reality and a dream or worse that no one can know the difference. But it never went there. It concluded that there is a reality and Tom Cruise's character chose to live in it. I remember being impressed with that.

Tom Cruise has chosen some really good scripts in the last few years with one notable exception. I loved 'Vanilla Sky' but not as much as I loved 'Minority Report' which despite some minor philosophical flaws offered a rare defense and glorification of free will. I also loved Tom's recent film 'collateral' which is discussed in a thread in this section of the forum. The one notable exception was 'The Last Samarai' which was an attack on Western Civilization and a glorification of barbarity. But 3 out of 4 aint bad.

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I saw a movie a handful of months ago called "Suicide Club", it's a japanese movie with subtitles but it was amazing. Simply amazing. I recommend it.

Its a really funny coincidence that you meantion that movie becasue that was one of the movies I considered when I was at the video rental store. But I chose Vanilla Sky instead.

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I enjoyed Vanilla Sky, just for the moment at the end where he choses reality over the lucent dream. Good movie.

I saw a movie a handful of months ago called "Suicide Club", it's a japanese movie with subtitles but it was amazing. Simply amazing. I recommend it.

Please tell me what you found amazing about this. I know how I have been saying that different art strikes different people in different ways. But 'Suicide Club' was the biggest piece of incoherent nonsense I have ever seen. Was it some commentary about teen suicide in Japan which I know is high? Is its message 'love life'? I mean what on earth could you find 'amazing.'

It had no plot, no character development, no discernable theme, no clarity, and a ton of useless blood and gore. Was it a Japanese version of 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show'? The only thing it did have is tons of adorable Japanese girls. Now I have to say I love Japanese women more than most but I didn't need to see them in this piece of crap. That's what Japanese porn is for.

Really. I have been reading in the various movie threads all kinds of explanations why such examples of dog shit like 'The Village', 'Unbreakable', anything by Tarantino, etc are to be glorified as 'great art'. Fine. Some people have made some decent arguments. But I must draw the line with 'Suicide Club.'

I am laying down the law and saying this now and for all time and saying it in the name of Ayn Rand, Aristotle, John Locke and the Founding Fathers: Suicide Club was one of the ten worst movies ever made in the history of the universe.

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I really liked Vanilla Sky. It's one of those movies that makes you step back and take a look a your life from a wider perspective than the usual daily grind.

I agree with argive99 that the skyscraper scene was touching.

"Look at us. I'm frozen and you're dead, and I love you."

"It's a problem." :lol:

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