Time and Sanity

12 Monkeys by Terry Gilliam

Other films by Terry Gilliam: Brazil (1985), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009)

I remember having seen the film maybe about 8years ago, and my memory of it was kind of fuzzy. All  I could gather is that both my favourite actors back then were in it, and that the film was creepy of confusing. In that sense, I wasn’t really expecting much, I thought the physical endeavour and imagery would do the rest of the work, but I was wrong. The plot of the film takes me by the neck and I was in awe admiration. The acting was spectacular, the concept; the possible world. This film is highly recommended for anyone who enjoys philosophy, thought experiments, and science fiction. And, to be specific, you are interested with the views on Time travel and Sanity (Solipsism) this movie needs to be included in your mind.


Directing: The science fiction concept was very exciting and got me glued to the screen instantly from the start. The way it was designed for the movie was there to gather attraction from the mainstream audience but a serious adaptation of the film’s concept would be a very good idea.

The introduction was managed nicely. It was obvious the objective given to the “volunteers” were dangerous since they even corrupt the definition of the work for the sake of it.

The zooming out of the painting scene was great camera work. Terry Gilliam really likes the diagonal camera angles that make the film feel like a weird dream.

I find it very innovative and creative how the looney tunes background music was magnified and paired up during the scene where Jeffrey was making hit funny rant. The character that followed him was funny and symbolic too, where is the demarcation of sanity and insanity?

The breaking out scene was really interesting and I would really love to have seen it revised seriously by different directors and theme.

The mysterious voice scene makes for great philosophical discussion.

The scene with James taking Kathryn hostage in the car was heart-warming and excitingly acted.

I really like the theme of insanity in the film. From the point of view of the people in 1996, Cole must seem crazy and just plainly imagining what was happening. But he was justified in his own introspection and memory that it’s all real. Like how we do so with ourselves. I also really liked the scene where they were trying to understand the situation and how they were being existential and stuck in time. The irony and twists keep getting better and better and much more suspenseful if possible.

I am now a great fan of Terry Gilliam.

Plot: I think they kind of exaggerated the contagion of the virus and the quarantine to avoid it. I was kind of hoping it was something else more causing the fear and destruction of our species but it was nice that the content of the film chose a different story.

The plot of the film is highly entertaining and suspenseful.

Characters/Acting: Brad Pitt’s opening scene impressed me. He’s playing such an interesting and creative adman character. He must have impressed David Fincher and other directors and critics with this performance.

Overall, Brad Pitt deserves a high nod of the Oscars for this, his acting must be circulated and stored for future films as one classic masterpiece. Bruce Willis did magnificently well too.

Score: The background music may have had its praise during the movie’s time and culture, and it actually entertains me as well although there were parts which they didn’t belong to.

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