Carlos Castaneda - Enigma of a Sorcerer (2002)
Average Rating: 3.6/10
Reviews Counted: 13
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 12
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Average Rating: 4/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 6
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 343
Directed by Ralph Torjan, this documentary profiles the life of self-proclaimed shaman Carlos Castaneda. Castaneda's LSD-induced visions and other explorations of "non-ordinary reality" helped him develop a devoted following during the late '60s and early '70s -- so much so that he would find himself on the cover of Time magazine in 1973. Though many people dismissed Castaneda as a fraud, an equal amount followed his teachings religiously; however, several prominent believers mysteriously left
Feb 27, 2004 Wide
Dec 13, 2005
Indican Pictures - Official Site
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Though interviews here are primarily with former camp followers and pic was made by one, overall perspective is just critical enough to satisfy both New Age types and curious skeptics.
Unless you are already a fan of Castaneda, the film is likely to leave you feeling as though you've just watched a very long, lost episode of that old TV series In Search of ...
Even ignoring the low-grade aesthetics, the documentary feels like you've stepped into a geek-nerd convention where all but hardcore initiates will be either bored or amused by the proceedings.
Not only doesn't provide any real information, it barely manages to convey why we should care.
Was Carlos Castaneda a great spiritual leader or a cynical con man? A digital video documentary struggles with that question but ultimately declines to answer it.
True believers will be thrilled that someone even made a movie about their hero; everyone else will find better-produced material on cable access.
The trippy omnipresent bluescreen opticals and the incessant electronic score are both distracting and headache inducing.
It will leave true believers deeply disillusioned and everybody else apathetic.
tiresome before the opening credits even roll... with the air of a cable access show
Torjan has absolutely zero grasp of pacing or narrative structure.
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