The Fountain | Chicago Reader

The Fountain

A pretentious, unfocused, and fussy mess (2006), in which director Darren Aronofsky manages to make Hugh Jackman unattractive and unsympathetic, whether he's stumbling through the jungle looking for the Tree of Life in the 16th century, weeping for his dying wife while trying to find a cure for her cancer in the present, or bobbing around as an astronaut in some inexplicable golden 26th-century future. Rachel Weisz (in real life the mother of Aronofsky's baby son) is photographed in extreme close-up to look like an angel, but she too suffers from the underbaked, incoherent script, whether playing Queen Isabel, Jackman's 16th-century patron, or his cancer-stricken wife, who's trying to finish writing a fablelike novella entitled “The Fountain.” Even fans of Aronofsky's incoherent, flashy Pi and somewhat more coherent, flashy Requiem for a Dream will be scratching their heads. R, 96 min.

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