Terry Gilliam - Rotten Tomatoes

Terry Gilliam

Highest Rated:   98% Brazil (1985)
Lowest Rated:   19% Absolutely Anything (2017)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
For most of Terry Gilliam's early career, fans of the popular comedy show Monty Python's Flying Circus assumed that he was British, since Python's other five members were natives of Britain. But the innovative animator and future director, who spent more time behind the scenes than in front of the camera, was actually the troupe's only American member. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on November 22, 1940, Gilliam was briefly employed as an assistant editor for Help! magazine (a job that introduced him to English comedian John Cleese, who was in NYC posing for a comic photo-strip in the magazine); he then emigrated to England in 1967. Soon after gilliam arrived in the U.K., he began working on Do Not Adjust Your Set, a popular children's TV show, developing his eccentric animated cartoons, which put into motion a hodgepodge of images, including photographs, cutouts from magazines, and famous works of art. Gilliam's contributions to the show were geared more toward adults, as his surrealistic stream-of-consciousness segments, drenched in black humor, were beyond the grasp of most children.In 1969, Gilliam was asked by Cleese and others to join the absurdist comedy troupe Monty Python. In addition to writing for Monty Python's Flying Circus, Gilliam also contributed his animated interludes, for which he was pretty much left to his own devices; the other Pythons just told him how much time he needed to fill and never gave him any narrative direction. Gilliam began offering his iconoclastic vision to moviegoers with the comedy troupe's first original film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), which he co-directed with fellow Python Terry Jones. An instant cult classic, the movie contained all the requisite Python elements: absurdist humor, self-referential parody, and extremely quotable dialogue. The following year, Gilliam had his first outing as a solo director with Jabberwocky (1976). Based on the poem by Lewis Carroll, the film featured a medieval setting similar to that of Holy Grail and starred Pythonite Michael Palin. Along with Python's brand of irreverent humor, the film featured glimmers of the visual resplendence that would become the director's trademark. But critics found it awkward and repetitive, and audiences largely stayed away. Following Jabberwocky's relative failure, Gilliam regrouped with his fellow Pythonites, co-creating The Life of Brian, the tale of a man with the misfortune of being confused with Jesus Christ. He left the directing duties to Terry Jones, focusing on animation, screenwriting, and acting. Gilliam returned to directing with Time Bandits (1979), a surreal journey through history led by a small boy and several dwarves. Bearing many similarities to Jabberwocky, Time Bandits relied less on repetition and moved the audience more briskly from one scene to the next. It did well at the box office and put Gilliam in the ranks of directors to watch.After co-directing with Terry Jones the third and final Python film, Monty Python's the Meaning of Life (1983), Gilliam made what many people consider his masterpiece, the dystopian satire Brazil (1985). Instead of journeying back to the Middle Ages, Gilliam boldly predicted a retro-1930s future of anonymous office drones commanded by an all-powerful computer. Blindingly imaginative, the film starred Jonathan Pryce as Sam Lowery, who attempts to escape the stifling bureaucratic system by fantasizing about being a superhero, and later by actually battling the powers-that-be in his own cowardly fashion. Consistently blurring the line between fantasy and reality and uncompromising in its surreal eccentricity, Gilliam's masterwork has been called Orwellian, Kafkaesque, and Luddite. A failure at the box office, Brazil has made up for that disappointment with its cult status. In addition to critical praise and a Los Angeles Film Critics award for Best Film, Gilliam received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay.It was four years before Gilliam steppe

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
19% Absolutely Anything
  • Nasty Alien
$0.7M 2017
No Score Yet Gaga For Dada - The Original Art Rebels
  • Actor
2016
26% Jupiter Ascending
  • Seal and Signet Minister
$43.8M 2015
No Score Yet Terry Gilliam's Benvenuto Cellini - English National Opera
  • Director
2015
51% The Zero Theorem
  • Director
2014
63% For No Good Reason
  • Actor
$67.6k 2014
No Score Yet Monty Python Live (Mostly)
  • Actor
$1.2M 2014
No Score Yet Monty Python: The Meaning Of Live
  • Actor
2014
45% A Liar's Autobiography - The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman
  • Actor
2012
91% Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan
  • Actor
2011
No Score Yet Monty Python: Almost the Truth - The Lawyers Cut
  • Actor
2011
86% George Harrison: Living In The Material World
  • Actor
2011
No Score Yet The Wholly Family
  • Director
2011
No Score Yet The Monster of Nix
  • The Ranger
2011
No Score Yet The Man Who Killed Don Quixote
  • Director
2011
92% Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?
  • Actor
$30.3k 2010
No Score Yet Dante Ferretti: Scenografo Italiano
  • Actor
2010
No Score Yet Not the Messiah (He's a Very Naughty Boy)
  • Actor
2010
64% The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
  • Producer
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
$7.6M 2009
No Score Yet Monty Python Almost the Truth Obligatory Making of Special
  • Actor
2009
No Score Yet Monty Python - Before & After
  • Actor
2008
44% The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes
  • Dr. Emmanuel Droz
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
2006
29% Tideland
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2006
No Score Yet Locked Out (Enfermes Dehors)
  • Actor
2006
38% The Brothers Grimm
  • Director
2005
No Score Yet Getting Gilliam
  • Actor
2005
94% Great Performances
  • Actor
$70.5k 2003
94% Lost in La Mancha
  • Actor
2003
63% Breakfast With Hunter
  • Actor
2003
49% Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1998
No Score Yet The Hamster Factor and Other Tales of 12 Monkeys
  • Actor
1997
88% Twelve Monkeys (12 Monkeys)
  • Director
1995
82% The Fisher King
  • Director
1991
No Score Yet Life of Python
  • Actor
1990
92% The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1989
No Score Yet Monty Python's Parrot Sketch Not Included
  • Actor
1989
35% Spies Like Us
  • Dr. Imhaus
1985
98% Brazil
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1985
No Score Yet The Secret Policeman's Private Parts
  • Actor
1984
22% Yellowbeard
  • Screenwriter
1983
No Score Yet The Crimson Permanent Assurance
  • Director
1983
90% Monty Python's The Meaning of Life
  • Third FishPrivate WaltersMaxHowardDonorWindow Washer/Fish #4/Walters/Middle of the Film Announcer
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1983
No Score Yet Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl
  • Screenwriter
  • Various rolesMao Zedong
1982
91% Time Bandits
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
  • Director
1981
97% Monty Python's Life of Brian
  • PersonMasked
1979
57% Jabberwocky
  • Man with Rock
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1977
No Score Yet Pleasure at Her Majesty's (Monty Python Meets Beyond the Fringe)
  • Actor
1976
97% Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  • Patsy/Soothsayer, Old Man from Scene 24
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1975
90% Monty Python's And Now for Something Completely Different
  • Director
  • Various rolesFlasher #1
  • Screenwriter
1972

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
2014
  • Guest
  • 2014
No Score Yet Great Performances
2000
  • Performer
  • 2004
No Score Yet Monty Python's Flying Circus
1969-1974
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Performer

Quotes from Terry Gilliam's Characters