Permanent Vacation Reviews
"Permanent Vacation" is much more of an endurance test, however. Parker dominates the screen time yet, unfortunately, he may be the film's least interesting actor. His prime handicap is a thin, whiny voice that would quickly turn unbearable if not for him having so few lines. Really, the film's most notable aspect may be its sound. The score is dominated by odd, droning lines that sound like church bells ringing underwater, and low-flying planes and ambient noise often obscure the dialogue. The mix's chance imperfections are almost avant-garde.
This is Jarmusch's first film and, honestly, I think it's more successful than Stranger Than Paradise. Visually, it's a fairly solid movie. For a first time director, he's got a handle on color that I truly envy. To bad there's little substance.
I KNOW! MINIMALIST! But to me, minimalist doesn't translate out to "crap." Because that's what most of this movie is. There's nothing tying this movie together. It's just a dude walking around. At least with Stranger than Paradise, we had a rough shell of a plot and there was some kind of character decision. Our main character doesn't have any kind of back story whatsoever. He's got no needs or no drive. He just talks without really saying much of anything. It's the philosophy of nothing.
There is one moment that I enjoyed. The irony of the whole scene was that if it was in any other movie, I would have criticised it for telling its message through monologue instead of action. But since this movie really didn't feed me anything else, I guess I have to settle for this soliloquy. There's a scene in a movie theater where a guy tells a story of a suicide case playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." That story was really well written and (even if it was told somewhere else before), I felt it tied our lead character to someone else in a real way. All of the other interactions in this movie are people playing crazy and miserable.
But back to the main character. The titular line reveals that the main character is looking for nothing to do for the rest of his life. But we don't really get an insight into why he's so downtrodden. He works hard to maintain his laziness, but that isn't even the focus of the piece. Hell, I think that's even a great idea to make a movie out of but that isn't the theme of this movie. This movie just...
g so boring in many years!!!!
Throughout the movie he talks about not being able to settle down or get a job. At some points he sort of comes off as mentally unstable, but not exactly in a violent way. More in just an awkward way although at the same time as being somewhat articulate. He doesn't seem to be lost physically or mentally. He really just seems to be lost in life with no direction, because he has no family for support and finds it hard to create relationships.
I didn't think the movie overall was great, but I did find it to be a very interesting character study with interesting visuals.