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Zizek! (Unrated)

Release Date: November 18th, 2005 (NYC-IFC Center) by Zeitgeist Films.
Directed by Astra Taylor.

BASIC PREMISE: A documentary about modern philosopher Slavoj Zizek.
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Slavoj Zizek has something to provocative say about almost everything in life. What makes him so engaging is not only his crazy thoughts, but his strange reasoning process. In this way, he’s surprising like a comedian. For example, when he learns that a restaurant is vegetarian-only, he claims that vegetarians are “degenerates” who are turning into monkeys. Then, as he observes his young son’s Lego display, he concludes that there’s feminism and lesbianism just because two authoritative women are next to one another. Zizek’s eccentricity shows especially when he visits a video store to buy his favorite movies. Director Astra Taylor follows him as he gives lectures at Columbia as well as Harvard. In an awkward scene, Taylor films him while he lays shirtless in the bed—still talking, of course. Thank heavens that he didn’t film him while taking a shower! Between the interviews, there are explanations for all the big philosophical words and concepts that Zikek touch upon to make it easier to follow. Taylor doesn’t allow Zizek to linger on one topic for too long before he moves on to the next. Although, there’s no doubt that he can continue talk about one subject matter for hours and hours. Fortunately, in every scene, he has enough energy, quirkiness, liveliness to hold your attention and even make you laugh.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: By the end of this film, you will think that Zizek needs to see a psychiatrist quickly before he loses his mind. Among all his crazy thoughts, the most thought-provoking one is that love cannot be felt by simply saying “I love you.”—it’s more of a pain or, some kind of sacrifice. You may not agree with all of his opinions, but he does come across as very well-read, analytical, and has enough confidence to publicly express his thoughts without any hesitation.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: Since when are vegetarians degenerates? Most of Zizek logic fails to make much sense.


THE BOTTOM LINE: Funny, provocative, and endlessly entertaining!

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)

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