Director: Spike Jonze

Starring: John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener

A young puppeteer discovers a portal that allows users to inhabit the mind of John Malkovich.

Jonze’s offbeat film defies categorization and comparison. It’s simply unique, and demands to be seen. It tells the story of young puppeteer Craig Schwartz (Cusack) who discovers a portal that allows users to inhabit the mind of Dangerous Liaisons star John Malkovich! With a scheming co-worker (Oscar nominated Catherine Keener) he works on a plan to exploit the portal for profit, offering customers the chance to be famous for fifteen minutes…

Columbia Tristar has provided a range of suitably peculiar supplements for the Region 2 DVD, including proper presentations of two short films featured within the movie, (the star-studded faux documentary John Horatio Malkovich: Dance of Despair and Disillusionment and the 7½th Floor Orientation), several TV adverts, the theatrical trailer, cast and crew bio’s, and a photo gallery. Accompanying most of the menu screens are score cues, but there’s apparently no more sensible way of accessing this nice feature. (Perhaps they didn’t want to damage CD sales...)

Two features from the American Region 1 disc are missing: the frankly tedious An Intimate Portrait of the Art of Background Driving (a six-minute piece focussing on an extra paid to drive her car up and down the motorway to provide background action) and the much more useful seven-minute An Intimate Portrait of the Art of Puppeteering, a profile of the performer who brought Schwartz’s puppets to life for the film. Both versions of the disc have excellent 16:9-enhanced widescreen (1.85:1) transfers and modest Dolby 5.1 sound.


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