Original European PAL video
Pink Floyd’s The Wall is a splendidly engrossing, self-indulgent rock & roll movie. Based on Pink Floyd’s monumental 1979 masterpiece The Wall, director Alan Parker and animator Gerald Scarfe took Roger Waters’ semi-autobiographical tale of Pink, a burned-out rock star who descends into alienation and madness, and turned it into a “midnight movie” cult favorite. A “feel-good movie” it is not, but Waters isn’t known for thematic subtlety. The Boomtown Rats’ Bob Geldof stars as Pink, and we watch as he silently reflects on his father’s death in World War II, his school days, his crumbling marriage, and his status as a fascist leader. The symbolism inherent in Waters’ concept, Parker’s fine direction, and Scarfe’s breathtaking animation is so strong it often bludgeons viewers, but it works. Two of Scarfe’s sequences in particular are stunning: “Goodbye Blue Sky” shows the Union Jack dissolve into a bloody cross as the blood runs down a drain; tense sexuality and misogyny illustrate “Empty Spaces” through copulating, human-like “flowers” (giving Freudian scholars much to chew on). Parker ends the film on a gently hopeful note when children literally clean up and rebuild a bombed-out city.
1. The Wall