Waking Life

Starring (Voice): Ethan Hawke & Julie Delpy
20th Century Fox
RRP: £19.99

Certificate: 15
Available now

Struggling to establish whether he is awake or asleep, Wiley Wiggins begins a journey where he encounters a number of real and fictional philosophers. Some offer one sentence asides on life, others delve deeply into existential questions and life's mysteries. Our hero is momentarily confused by mysterious episodes, such as floating into the air or being unable to physically grip objects. However, just like someone in a dream, he accepts them and moves on...

Waking Life is a thought provoking work of art. Originally shot using actors on digital video, the production used digital technology to paint over the actors. What you are left with is a surreal moving picture embracing numerous different artistic styles.

Weaving a complex narrative between the waking and dreaming state this will have you questioning your own existence. And, if nothing else, I can guarantee that you will spend at least a few days switching every light switch you pass on and off several times.

This is one of those movies that you really need to be in the mood for. It takes a little concentration and this won't appeal to those who have closed minds. However, if you come with an open mind you will not be disappointed.

It's a shame that there are no extras on this DVD. It would have been interesting to hear about the technological processes that enabled the production to transfer living images into computer animation. I would also have loved to hear how they approached the armchair philosophers - were they all real?

This is a beautiful and original masterpiece.

Amber Leigh


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