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The Fountain (2006)
The Fountain is not a motion picture for everyone. It's pacing is slow and ponderous, but I would say with an artistic flair. As a viewer one must be prepared for three story lines (past/present/future) running simultaneously -- all of which are connected, but you don't know exactly how until the conclusion.
The main actors play separate parts, in different times.
Hugh Jackman is credited with playing Tomas / Tommy / Tom Creo
Rachel Weisz is credited with playing Isabel / Izzi Creo
The Fountain is basically a romance that transcends time and space.
In the past Jackman plays a conquistador who is instructed by Queen Isabel of Spain for him to find the tree of life and its properties to provide immortal life. This Jackson does despite dissension among his weary, disgruntled ranks. He actually encounters the tree of life, but the outcome is not as one might imagine.
In the present world Jackman is a medical researcher, striving desperately to find a cure for his wife's illness. He works with the barks of various trees that seem to provide promising results. The clock is ticking and Izzi (Rachel Weisz) is running out of time. Jackman's drive to find this laboratory cure sometimes outweighs his appreciation of the moment -- when he still has Izzi to have and hold.
In the future Jackman plays a kind of space traveling astronaut. He is encased inside a bubble within which is a tree that we may assume is the same tree of life found eons ago.
The tree is dying from old age, and, here again, Jackman is working against time. His goal seems to be to become absorbed into a nebula and somehow reestablish his connection with his lost loved one.
This is the theme that seems to connect all three story lines -- the attempt to immortalize love.
Cinematically, the various elements blend together much better than can be put to words. The movie is like a poem and it tugs at the heart strings. The imagery is fantastic and memorable.
The acting of Jackman and Weisz is impeccable in all of their roles.
To date, this is the most romantic science fiction film I have viewed. There are no explosions here, no drooling aliens, just the wish for the continuity of love, of life.
The score by Clint Mansell is haunting and beautiful.
The Fountain is highly recommended to those who are looking for films with more substance in their picture watching while still being presenting an original style.