Mystery Train

Mystery Train

DVD - 2000
Average Rating:
4
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A teenage couple from Japan on a pilgramage to Graceland, a mysterious Italian beauty escorting her husband's body back to Italy, and an unemployed, armed misfit known as Elvis meet in Memphis. Their intertwined tales create a comic masterpiece.
Publisher: Santa Monica, CA : MGM Home Entertainment, 2000
ISBN: 9780792844037
0792844033
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (110 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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t
TheeAvebury
Feb 18, 2018

The film tells three stories, basically unconnected except that the characters all check into the same hotel in Memphis. The hotel is a flea trap with just the most minimal furniture in tiny rooms; at check-in "No TV."
There are just the barest necessities: a bed, two chairs, a night table, a portrait of Elvis on the wall.
The director Jim Jarmusch takes his time with almost every shot, lingering on the minimalist scenes and in no hurry to move the story along. As Roger Ebert writes: "Notice how some of his traveling shots in "Mystery Train" seem to dictate the movements of characters, rather than following them. See how he isolates a portion of an interior rather than "establishing" a whole location. Notice the unobtrusive manipulation of time when the drunks are riding around in a pickup."
Each of the three stories are interesting; the two clerks in the hotel provide comic relief and a bit of tissue connecting the stories. I enjoyed the stories, but found the director's decision more interesting, so much so that I watched three times, once for the stories, once for the technique, and once just to enjoy an off-beat movie in which the seedy side of Memphis becomes a character in its own right -- and ties everything together.

r
readyrisa
Jan 13, 2018

A quirky film from the late 80's ...interesting and different!

brendancarlson Jan 05, 2014

A quirky, non-linear, black comedy for those that can appreciate something a little different.

i
Ichigaga
Jan 26, 2011

Being a Jarmusch film, patience is called for by the viewer. You will enjoy this if you are open to movies that take their time to tell the story. There are 3 independent plots related to each other by the location in Memphis.

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