Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Lost In La Mancha: Film Review

[1] Lost In La Mancha (2002)

[1]"There's no shortage of disaster stories in the history of film production, but none have been recorded with such frankness, immediacy and aching sense of disappointment as in Lost In La Mancha... entertaining and instructive... a tantalizing memorial." (Derek Elley, VARIETY)

Lost In La Mancha is a "film" directed by Keith Fulton and written by Terry Gilliam. In the poster it is described as "Fabulous... One of the best movies ever made about a movie". This is what the film is all about, a film that came so close, yet so far from completion.

This film is all about a film, called "Lost In La Mancha", that was never made due to mass delays, injuries and other unfortunate mis-haps. In conclusion, the film ended up being released as a "making of" film, following Fulton and the cast & crew around the world as they film LILM, scene by scene.

Writer Terry Gilliam (right) on set with french actor Jean Rochefort
Terry Gilliam is a well known writer of films and has been nominated for a number of awards, including an Oscar. One thing about Gilliam which potentially lets him down however is his inability to stick to a set budget, he constantly pushes the boundaries of every project he makes well beyond the limit budget wise. Time Bandits (1981), The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988) and The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus (2009) are just a few titles by Gilliam which, of course, went over budget.

An in-depth astrological reports website states; [2]"Terry Gilliam is extremely strong-willed and he pursues his goals and desires with passionate dedication and determination." (Topsynergy). Of course, anybody who knows anything about Gilliam wouldn't doubt his passion and dedication, but this really shines through during the making of LILM. The effort of trying to piece together a film that you have always wanted to make, running into many problems and hold ups along the way, only to find you simply cannot make it due to injured actors, low funds and other issues must be indescribably frustrating. To repeatedly want to go back and do it all again or to pick up where you left off one day however, is Gilliams true passion an determination to pursue his ultimate goal.

I believe Gilliam was swallowed by his fantastical film ideas and ambitions, [3]"Gilliam admits the idea had obsessed him for years" (Derek Elley, VARIETY). He Ultimately let the film get the better of him, sabotaging his chances all together. All in all, the little completed clips of the film looked promising enough to make a relatively interesting film, but sadly this will not compensate for the time and money that went into this whole production.


[1] Elley, David (Feb. 28, 2002), Lost in La Mancha (Docu--U.K.). In: VARIETY [online] Available at:

[2] Topsynergy, Terry Gilliam drive and ambition. In: Topsynergy [online] Available at:
[3] Elley, David (Feb. 28, 2002), Lost in La Mancha (Docu--U.K.). In: VARIETY [online] Available at:

Illustration List:

[1] Terry Gilliam (2002), Lost In La Mancha [electronic print] Available at:

[2] Terry Gilliam (2002), Writer Terry Gilliam (right) on set with french actor Jean Rochefort [electronic print] Available at:

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