Danza De La Realidad (“The Dance of Reality”) is an autobiographical film that Jodorowsky crowdsourced. It should debut today at the Cannes film festival (or perhaps already did), along with Jodorowsky’s Dune, a documentary about the director’s cancelled attempt to adapt the book.
The LA Times has more:
Born to Russian Jewish émigrés in 1929, Jodorowsky studied theater and worked as a circus clown and puppeteer in Santiago. In postwar Paris he performed mime with Marcel Marceau and fell in with the surrealists. He then moved to Mexico, where he mounted dozens of plays inspired by Antonin Artaud’s theater of cruelty. Back in Paris, where he has lived since the 1980s, he cultivated multiple sidelines: writing comic books, studying the tarot and developing a therapeutic method known as psychomagic, rooted in both psychoanalysis and shamanism.
Psychomagic is the guiding philosophy of “The Dance of Reality,” a kind of home movie writ large. Jodorowsky’s wife, Pascale Montandon, was the costume designer, and three of his sons appear in it, including Brontis (who in “El Topo” portrayed the son of the title character, a gunslinger known as “the mole” and played by Alejandro Jodorowsky). In the new film, Brontis, now 50, plays Jodorowsky’s Stalin-lookalike father, whom the director described as “a very terrible father, a very hard man, but he had his reasons.”
“Before we started, I said to the crew, ‘I am trying to heal my soul,’” Jodorowsky said. “But it’s not an egocentric, narcissistic picture. Poetry doesn’t speak about history. It speaks about interior life, universal problems.”
And from The Guardian’s review:
Of course, the entire story is swathed in surreal mythology, dream logic and instant day-glo legend, resmembling Fellini, Tod Browning, Emir Kusturica, and many more. You can’t be sure how to extract conventional autobiography from this. Despite the title, there is more “dance” than “reality” — and that is the point. Or part of the point. For the first time, Jodorowsky is coming close to telling us how personal evasiveness has governed his film-making style; his flights of fancy are flights of pain, flights from childhood and flights from reality. And now he is using his transformative style to come to terms with and change the past and to confer on his father some of the heroism that he never attained in real life.
For more on Jodorowsky, see our Alejandro Jodorowsky dossier.
Alejandro Jodorowsky is a stage and film director, comic book writer, tarot reader, and unlicensed psychotherapist. He’s best known for his films Holy Mountain, El Topo and Santa Sangria.
He was set to direct the Dune movie in the 80s and after the deal fell through he turned his Dune ideas into a comic universe consisting of L’Incal, Metabarons, and Technopriest. Jodorowsky and artist Moebius unsuccessfully sued director Luc Besson for lifting elements of L’Incal for his movie Fifth Element.
Jodorowsky is now raising money for an autobiographical film called The Dance of Reality and has also raised money for a sequel to El Topo called Abel Cain.
Jodorowsky is friends with musician Marilyn Manson and officiated the wedding of Manson and Dita Von Teese. Manson was to play the pope in now indefinitely delayed Jodorowsky film King Shot, but may appear instead in Abel Cain.
Documentary to Examine Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Dune. I can’t find a release date for this yet.
alejandro-jodorowsky.com in Spanish.
La Danza de la Realidad The Official site for The Dance of Reality. You can donate here.
Abkco Films Jodorowsky page Publishers of the Holy Mountain DVD
Jodorowsky page on Humanoids publisher of his comics
La Cravate Jodorowsky’s first film, made in 1957. Silent short film.
Santa Sangria is available on Netflix Watch Instantly.
Jodorowsky’s Dune is a forthcoming documentary by Frank Pavich that explores how the Jodorowsky’s Dune project fell apart.
Jodorowsky was set to direct Dune featuring Orson Welles and Salvador Dali, designs by Moebius and H.R. Giger, and music by Pink Floyd. Here’s pretty much everything I could about Jodorowsky’s Dune.
King Shot is currently delayed Jodorowsky film that was to be produced by David Lynch and feature Nick Nolte, Asia Argento, Marilyn Manson, Udo Kier, and Santiago Segura.
Official King Shot site – nothing here yet.
Scans of Fabulas Panicas (Panic Fables), Joworowsky’s weekly comic strip from the late 60s. In Spanish.
Jodorowsky interviews Marilyn Manson May 2007, translated from French?
The Flash vs. Gurdjieff by Alejandro Jodorowsky from the Spanish science-fiction magazine Nueva in 1968.
Vice Magazine interview Oct 2009 – Terrific interview
Jodorowsky interview in the Guardian about Abel Cain November 2009
Long Jodorowsky interview on psychomagic. The second interview from the Spanish program ‘Negro sobre blanco’. Interview in Spanish with English subtitles. (The first is one of the tarot videos linked above).
Interview with Jodorowsky August 2008.
Video interview with Jodorowsky by timesquare.com, July 2008.
BBC Interview, 2007. Article here. Jodorowsky explains how he makes pornographic sculptures with his boogers and then masturbates to them.
Fortean Times interview from July 2007.
Jodorowsky interviews Marilyn Manson May 2007, translated from French?
LA Weekly interview from 2004. By Arthur Magazine’s Jay Babcock.
1999 interview from Mean Magazine by Arthur’s Jay Babcock. Recommended
Fad Magazine interview from 1996.
Short 1990 interview on violence.
El Topo soundtrack downloads Dead link – any replacement or place to purchase?
Probably obvious to those who have read the book and seen the movies, but interesting in light of the Skywalker Paradigm, which holds, for example, that Jabba is nobility and not a gangster (he’s referred to as “Lord,” Luke must approach him diplomatically) and that the Jedi do not have supernatural powers, but are just master manipulators and hypnotists (sort of like male Bene Gesserit).
The page includes details on many of the influences on Dune as well, such as General Semantics.
In “Jodorowsky’s Dune,” director Frank Pavich intends to get to the bottom of the proposed film and why it fell apart. The doc, half-completed, is currently looking for distribution at Cannes, though interviews with Jodorowsky, Geiger and others have already been recorded. They’ve also released a promo video, obtained by TwitchFilm, which should whet your appetite for what Pavich has in store—check it out after the jump
We hope this is the beginning of a Jodorowsky renaissance. His collaboration with David Lynch’s Absurda Films, “King Shot,” sought financing at Cannes in 2009, but the project was eventually canceled. And we have no idea what happened with “Abelcain,” the long-rumored sequel to “El Topo” that supposedly secured a budget in the fall that same year. It’s just as well, considering Jodo hasn’t been behind the camera since 1990’s “The Rainbow Thief” (which he has since disowned), but we do recommend the excellent two-disc “Santa Sangre” DVD put out earlier this year by the good folks at Severin Films.
And here’s a clip from, I think, the documentary La Constellation Jodorowsky about the Dune project:
Jodorowsky’s ideas for Dune ended up in his comic Metabarons, which is still in print.
Where does your knowledge of religions come from?
From my father, in a way. He was an atheist. When I was four he said to me, “God doesn’t exist.” It gave rise to an incredible fear, so I started to read anything that could soothe me, metaphysically speaking. All religions, all esoteric movements, alchemy, the Kabbalah, I read about all this. Except astrology–that always pissed me off.
Hum…did you have a script for The Holy Moutain?
I had a frame but I made up the story little by little, every night.
You were said to shoot after taking magic mushrooms…
No, well… Actually, only one scene was shot after taking shrooms. And we messed up. We had to reach a holy place, the top of the pyramid. The actors and I decided to be as mystical as the place we were in. But I made a mistake, I did not force my cameraman to take magic mushrooms as well. He was sober. He saw us and laughed at us as you laugh at drunkards. He decided to put a distorting lens, to shoot us in a ridiculous, psychedelic way. It was a shitty effect on a beautiful, rare, and clean scene which you should not touch. So we climb the pyramid, guided by our supra-conscience. Once there I scratched the ground and I extracted a stone, a cube which we brought on the top. On the top we found a little flower, a very little flower: it was magic, pure. And the fucking cameraman put a distorting lens to capture that, as if we were monsters.. I wanted to kill him.
I realized what he did too late, we were in wild, virgin territories, I only saw the rushes once back in New York. I fled from Mexico because they wanted to put a bomb in my flat, yelling I was evil. I had 30 hours of film you know, he ruined more than a third. I was fool to believe that if the technicians were clean, they would work correctly. But on the contrary, they did not understand a thing about the movie, there was no communication between us and them. They looked at us as if we were wild beasts and thought they could do anything with the camera. When I think about what we messed up, I feel sick.