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Terry Gilliam's Trilogy


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#1 DWF

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 08:59 PM

Is Time Bandits, Brazil and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen a trilogy in your eyes? They have been called trilogy by Gilliam himself and I've also heard them refered to as his "death trilogy", but the three do seem to be related.

http://www.trond.com...il/b_faq06.html

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In the promotion of the film The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, Terry Gilliam openly referred to that film as the third in his trilogy of films, which began with Time Bandits and continued with Brazil. Later, Gilliam has been quoted in saying that calling the three a trilogy was just him being "pretentious".

Do the three form a trilogy? They certainly seem to: The Battle of Brazil explains that Gilliam's trilogy is about the ages of man, and the subordination of magic to realism. Time Bandits was part one, about the fantasist as a child. Brazil was part two, the fantasist as a young man, and Baron Munchausen closes the series with its story about an old man who, through the innocence and open mindedness of a small girl, regains his belief in magic. Both Time Bandits and Brazil have bleak endings, but Baron Munchausen shows the final triumph of this sort of magic through fantasy, as Munchausen circumvents the reality of his death in his own tall tales, achieving immortality through his storytelling.

Considering that Gilliam was on record calling Baron Munchausen the third in the trilogy before production on Munchausen began, it is definite that even if Gilliam was not thinking of making a trilogy as he wrote and filmed Time Bandits and Brazil, he certainly considered them that at the end, and made Baron Munchausen with that in mind.

Now, I've loved all three movies and I can see why he would consider them to be a trilogy, which is probably why I haven't liked his other movies, these three were written by Gilliam and they all have his view of the world. :cool:

What does everybody else think, do they all fit together, even if they aren't one storyline like other recent trilogies?
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#2 Harpie4

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 09:14 PM

I don't see them as a trilogy - a trilogy to me is a story that runs throughout three movies featuring the same characters and continuing a story arc - IE the LOTR trilogy, the ORIGINAL Star Wars trilogy and the Indiana Jones trilogy.

Whilst the three Gilliam movies mentioned may have some similar themes that unite them, all being fantasy genre,  and, obviously, having Gilliams unique vision and style, I would not describe them as a trilogy. Only if he had only ever made those three movies could you , loosely, call them the "Gilliam trilogy" but he has made other movies since them like " The Fisher King".
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#3 DWF

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 09:28 PM

Harpie4, on May 1 2004, 10:12 PM, said:

I don't see them as a trilogy - a trilogy to me is a story that runs throughout three movies featuring the same characters and continuing a story arc - IE the LOTR trilogy, the ORIGINAL Star Wars trilogy and the Indiana Jones trilogy.

Whilst the three Gilliam movies mentioned may have some similar themes that unite them, all being fantasy genre,  and, obviously, having Gilliams unique vision and style, I would not describe them as a trilogy. Only if he had only ever made those three movies could you , loosely, call them the "Gilliam trilogy" but he has made other movies since them like " The Fisher King".
While the Indiana Jones movies are a trilogy, I don't think they have an acr, or a continuing storyline and I can say the same about the Man With No Name movies, that Clint Eastwood made with Sergio Leone.

But I do think that, Gilliam's movies also contain many similar themes, one of them being death and how his characters continually escape from from death, strange as that may sound. :Oo:
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#4 Harpie4

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 09:36 PM

Well, instead of using the word "and" I should have used" Or", apologies for that DWF.  What I had meant to say was that a trilogy is containing the SAME characters OR the same story arc. IE - Indiana Jones is linked by the central character and his quest for archaelogical artefacts. In this way, I don't see the three Gilliam movies as being a trilogy because they do not have either, in my opinion. However, that said, I can see how they would LOOSELY be termed as a trilogy because of the recurrent themes in each movie that could be said to link them.
"Home is behind, the world ahead, & there are many paths to tread.
Through shadow, to the edge of night, until the stars are all alight.
Mist & shadow, cloud & shade. All shall pale, all shall... fade."


Peregrin Took, Son of Paladin. In the Great hall of Minas Tirith. ROTK

#5 DWF

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 09:50 PM

Harpie4, on May 1 2004, 10:34 PM, said:

Well, instead of using the word "and" I should have used" Or", apologies for that DWF.  What I had meant to say was that a trilogy is containing the SAME characters OR the same story arc. IE - Indiana Jones is linked by the central character and his quest for archaelogical artefacts. In this way, I don't see the three Gilliam movies as being a trilogy because they do not have either, in my opinion. However, that said, I can see how they would LOOSELY be termed as a trilogy because of the recurrent themes in each movie that could be said to link them.
No need to apologize, trilogies are an interesting study in their own right, and in some ways the main character in each of Gilliam's movies are himself, in an odd sort of way.

:yin-yang:
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#6 Harpie4

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 10:00 PM

Yeah, I guess that is getting  pretty allegorical but I can see that. Not sure the "everyday" movie goer who goes to the movies or rents videos to be "entertained" would get that though. In fact, I don't think the average movie goer would actually "get" any of Gilliams movies period. He is pretty deep and intellectual in the way he portrays his ideas. That's kinda what I like about him. Plus I like anything that is off the wall and "different". I guess Gilliam is your classic definition of  having a "cult" style. IE Only a small proportion of movie fans would appreciate his movies and what he is trying to say in them.
"Home is behind, the world ahead, & there are many paths to tread.
Through shadow, to the edge of night, until the stars are all alight.
Mist & shadow, cloud & shade. All shall pale, all shall... fade."


Peregrin Took, Son of Paladin. In the Great hall of Minas Tirith. ROTK

#7 DWF

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 10:17 PM

^^^Oh I totally agree, when I first saw Brazil it was the edited version, which little sense to me, but after seeing the complete version on tape, it made more sense to me. And the other two were just as "out there" but I did enjoy them, even though The Adventures of Baron Munchausen made me alittle sleepy towards the middle, it's probably my favorite of the three. And all of his movies have that neat twist at the end, making sure the movie stays with you, which is also pretty cool. :cool:
The longest-running science fiction series: decadent, degenerate and rotten to the core. Power-mad conspirators, Daleks, Sontarans... Cybermen! They're still in the nursery compared to us. Fifty years of absolute fandom. That's what it takes to be really critical.

"Don't mistake a few fans bitching on the Internet for any kind of trend." - Keith R.A. DeCandido

#8 Christopher

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Posted 02 May 2004 - 08:30 AM

http://www.bartleby....1/T0359100.html

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A group of three dramatic or literary works related in subject or theme.
(Emphasis mine)

So three works don't have to have a continuing plot or characters to constitute a trilogy -- a common thematic thread is enough.
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#9 the Pill

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 12:21 AM

Wow, I had never thought of that.  It makes so much more sense now when I think of it.

#10 G-man

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 07:43 AM

Hurm, a trilogy ...

Well, yes, in Terry Gilliam's case I can see those films as a trilogy on a thematic level.  Whether this was a conscious or subconscious thing when he created them is probably open for debate, as I think he was producing films that interested him and it just so happened that they all were concerned with fantasy versus reality, offering differing takes on the subject matter.

Albeit, I think he's the first writer/director in a long time to link his films thematically, as opposed to character or storyarc.

/s/

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Edited by G-man, 03 May 2004 - 07:45 AM.

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