Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Dark Crystal (1982)

This was partly a furtherance of one of my obsessions (Fantasy Movies I Have Loved), and partly one of Mrs. Sgt. T's (Labyrinth is one of her '80s raves).

Some things you love when you're young age well, and some don't. Dragonslayer did; The Dark Crystal didn't. Not only did its slooooooow pace bother me more now, when I'm supposedly an adult with a longer attention span, than it did when I was a kid and enthralled by the atmosphere of the thing (and why is it so slow? is it because it's Muppets and if they moved fast they'd look like Muppets? or was everybody involved just stoned? in retrospect it's the perfect stoner movie)...

Yeah, not only that, but the faery design of it looks incredibly kitschy to me now. Yes, I do maintain that there's some fantasy that's not kitschy - but the Gelflings, particularly the Gelflingette with her wings... So RenFest.

But I can't deny that I was enthralled by the atmosphere of the thing when I was a kid. I must have been. There are passages in it that my conscious mind had completely forgotten about that when I saw them again the other day (I hadn't watched this in probably twenty-five years) felt like coming home. The swamp where the he-Gelfling meets the she-Gelfling, with its lush fecundity - it feels like everything's alive (and it is, because it's all Muppets - even the ground moves) - somehow in my thirteen-year-old brain that became one of my primal images for life, for the good green earth, for Gaia - it fused with the slow part of "Close To The Edge" somewhere along the line (the bit where you can almost hear the frogs jumping out of Rick Wakeman's mellotron), and with Basho's verse about the old pond...

Anyway, I'd forgotten where I'd gotten that. So I can't hate on this movie too much. It gave me something precious, long ago.

2 comments:

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Tanuki said...

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