What Is It? - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

What Is It? Reviews

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August 26, 2015
O delírio artístico de Crispin Glover (conhecido eternamente no cinema pelo personagem Mcfly de Back to the Future) certamente não é palatável às grandes massas consumidoras dos blockbusters hollywoodianos ou dos propagadores dos padrões mais moralistas difundidos pelo conservadorismo.

Filme de fortes influências surrealistas, com poderosos ecos das obras de Buñuel e Jodorowsky, "What is it?" requer paciência similar ao de um homem que fita a lente de objetiva que, aos poucos, vai enfocando e produzindo uma imagem cujos componentes (ainda assim) não são formulaicos ou simplórios, mas de resolução opaca e disforme.

O que soa como um número de cenas mórbidas atiradas a esmo e sem conexão ao espectador, gradativamente expõem um quebra cabeças repleto de elementos comuns fortemente distorcidos para compor uma história densa e curiosa.

Glover utiliza atores com síndrome de down (algumas parecem com retardamento severo), pessoas com problemas neurológicos e dificuldades de fala, desconstrói padrões de beleza, desestigmatiza o sexo, proporciona uma releitura da violência psicológica e física interior aos diversos planos do filme, tudo de forma original e bem diferente de um clássico como Freaks, por exemplo.

O filme é bastante perturbador, incomoda, e há um impressionante diálogo entre a perversidade, o lúdico, onírico, bizarro e o surreal. Vale a repetição de que não é um filme comum e provavelmente não agradará a imensa maioria do público. Mas, para os amantes do cinema de arte, vale bastante a pena uma olhadela, se você se propuser às esquisitices do filme.
March 22, 2015
Intriguing, hilarious, different, and relevant, What is it? is a film that provokes that, and other questions.
½ May 14, 2014
Crispin Glover was walking on the ground when he made this movie. He didn't make a sound, he in fact turned around and saw a clown.
May 11, 2014
Viewed this film in Asbury Park NJ; great film.
February 24, 2012
I have seen "What Is It?" and I find it to be a trip down everyone's inner self that they refuse to explore.. I want to see it again! -Dawn
February 19, 2012
It's definitely best to watch this at one of Crispin's live shows so that he is there to explain his intent in making the film. That aspect itself, gives the film an extra star, because my initial reaction was just 1-star. I really didn't like it, and/because I really didn't get it. Maybe I was just too tired and need to give it another chance when I'm more alert; however, whatever the case may be, I appreciate and respect his intent.
January 19, 2012
Crispin Glover's masterpiece of uncomfortable imagery and parody of art house films is F'ing awesome. It's up there with The Holy Mountain and Singapore Sling in terms of crazy badassness.
May 15, 2011
Amazing! Saw this followed by a Q & A with Crispin.
½ December 15, 2010
Beautifully filmed movie that largely takes place in the psyche of a young man with Down's Syndrome as he grapples with his libido and internalized racism. Glover not only directs, but plays a sort of tyrannical id figure (who seems to view himself as sort of "pure" or "innocent", as evidenced by his demand to be called Shirley Temple). This films touches on quite a few taboos--the least of which is the notion that people with special needs are somehow beyond the mental poison that our culture seeps into all of us, to some degree. (Glover addressed this point when speaking at the screening on his choice to use a cast mostly of actors with Down's Syndrome). Definitely harsh in places--I'd never heard Johnny Rebel before and it turned my stomach once I did, and really, the salt on snails could have been done with CGI. However, I hope he screens this in NYC again or puts it on DVD, because it feels like the kind of film where more could be taken away through repeated viewings.
December 12, 2010
B = Well above average
September 14, 2010
How do you rate a movie like What is it? It's interesting sometimes, but other times I was wondering if he was being weird for the sake of being weird. And I caught myself asking "can you do that with people with down syndrome?" many times. You can definitely see what Crispin Glover is doing with the film. It shows the battle within for fighting demons. That's why the movie never makes much sense. Most of this movie is probably so personal to Crispin Glover that no one else will fully understand it. You think anything David Lynch makes is weird, watch this! Perhaps the weirdest movie ever made. "Hugging Arnold Swarzennegger!"
½ August 10, 2010
(Watched Fri 27 Jun 2008)
July 13, 2010
This amounts to an amalgam of the concepts underlying Even Dwarfs Started Small or Tod Browning's Freaks and the aesthetics of Holy Mountain. It's kind of conceptual copy and paste in that regard but I'd rather have the above films and artists copied than not. In an era where the Surrealist film is all but dead (save for a small collection of auteurs represented by more well known film makers like Guy Maddin and Matthew Barney), it's great to see something traumatic, funny, and unrestrained.

It does have one of my favorite lines in a film ever; "Five-hundred more injections and I shall become an invertebrate."
February 19, 2010
Designed pretty much to offend and confuse you. Crispin Glover directs a movie with an all down syndrome cast. He plays some kind of dictator who watches them do depraved things. It reminds me that the line between genius and insanity is very thin. It's pretty obvious that Glover is on the side of insanity. It's all well and good to make movies like this but they should have a point besides just showing offensive images and trying to provoke a reaction.

This movie is practically Crispin Glover screaming "Don't you all think I'm very weird and a genius?"

Soundtrack: Some Niggers Never Die (They Just Smell That Way)

That pretty much sums up this horrible excuse for an experimental film.
November 25, 2009
No really what was that?
½ November 18, 2009
glover's indictment of the hollywood system (and mass media in general) is repulsive, complex, and confusing, but i like it just for existing. repeat viewings will be required to learn its secrets.
November 6, 2009
To be fair, it could be a single wide shot of a snail yelling for 72 minutes and I'd still give it 5 stars. Crispin Glover means your argument is void. It's amazing.
½ June 15, 2009
WOW! Must be seen by all. This will bend your mind! Go see it when it is on tour near you. Nude Nazi Shirley Temple w/ a riding crop. Brutal imagery in this flick. The snails screaming was seriously unnerving. Only film I am aware of that uses a Johnny Rebel song & a mostly Down's Syndrome cast. That takes a pair of stones!
February 12, 2009
Longest hour and 12 minutes ever. I like art films, but didn't like this one. However, I will give it credit for being so striking. Not to mention the screaming snail.
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