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Overall Rating

Awesome: 19.64%
Worth A Look: 10.71%
Average: 3.57%
Pretty Bad: 28.57%
Total Crap37.5%

3 reviews, 38 user ratings

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Cremaster 3
[] Buy posters from this movie
by Greg Muskewitz

"From the cycles of excessive masturbation."
1 stars

An unending rodomontade of self-indulgence of the “arty” variety, meandering along for a slow and excruciating three hours.

At least, that’s the running time listed for this experimental masturbation. (Speaking of which, the cremaster is a valve or function, from what I’ve been informed, that assists in the action of an erection, by raising the testicles. Quite a workout, indeed.) I made it a full two-hours, past the two-minute intermission, and as it had gone nowhere in that 120-minute timeframe, and wasn’t going to go anywhere in the foreseeable 60-minutes remaining, once the Indiana Jonesian protagonist (also the “writer/director” Matthew Barney) had the remnants of a smashed up car (which had been taking place since the opening frames) shoved into his mouth, thus causing his rectum or intestines, or something, to seep out from his anus and leek out his teeth amid other fluids, I took my leave. (Explanation won’t help: his teeth were knocked in in an earlier scene at a racetrack.) Most of the movie takes place inside the Chrysler Building and the Guggenheim Museum with nothing particularly relevant or linear occurring, additionally devoid of dialogue, but with the enormous vex of a screeching soundtrack and twangy, elfy song. Apparently the thing is one of a five-part out-of-order cycle, not connected in any other way aside from the director, general pretentiousness, and the other movies’ non-linearity; and from what I’ve read, the longest one in comparison is 72-minutes, with the lowest consumption of time dipping to 40-something minutes. (I did, however, discover that the feminine body that dug its way out of the dirt was supposed to be Gary Gilmore, who was featured in Cremaster 2, with Barney as Gilmore.) I’ve heard some compliments directed at its clear photography (is that the best all that money could buy?), but inspection reveals imprudent and impulsive filming, ignoring even the basest of compositional rules. The cinematography is just as slipshod as whatever is being filmed at a given moment, switched back-and-forth to, drilled over and over, incessantly, into some of the most bottomless depths of tedium. After weighing my chances of catching any of the other four during their run here in San Diego for about ten-seconds (I had never even heard of the cycle until I was in New York for a year, only during which the third one showed without my attendance), the answer was clearer than any photography seen here.

[Not to be bothered with.]

link directly to this review at
originally posted: 05/05/04 18:50:05
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Edinburgh Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Edinburgh Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

7/12/09 Jared Kreiner The most well known chapter of the Cremaster cycle. Sadly, mostly Guggenheim photage. 2 stars
5/16/06 Hu Gives modern art a bad name 1 stars
8/30/05 Nick Kraemer interesting. makes the guggenheim that much better. 4 stars
11/26/04 K R Not even woth of comying it!!! 1 stars
2/16/04 plounger i hated it at first but i can't shake the imagery. i wish i could see it again. 5 stars
2/13/04 Jason Heindl Not quite as good as Cremasters 2 or 5, but still amazing 5 stars
2/06/04 Rose visual vomitus--pretention painted in PUKE! 1 stars
1/07/04 Parma Violets Oh dear, did someone shake Jack's crib? 2 stars
11/22/03 jack Cremasters suck hairy monkey balls. so does Graham. made me poke out my eyes and eat them. 1 stars
11/22/03 steve it made me feel like i was watching really scary ass porn. I feel dirty. 5 stars for fucked 1 stars
11/21/03 Graham First two hours: eminently sucky. Last hour: rocked. Watch Cremasters 1&2 instead. 3 stars
11/15/03 peter griffen this piece of crap sucked. there is no joke, this made angel sanctuary seem ethical 1 stars
11/15/03 Allen what a crap-tastic film. i would have more fun watching monkeys masterbate 1 stars
11/15/03 sally steve mobia is a crackbaby. the movie made me want to poke out my eyes. share some crack 1 stars
11/08/03 Cracka Jack Ted sucks... oh yeah and so does the movie. Both awful. Makes me want to vomit. 1 stars
11/08/03 bill nye why? 1 stars
10/20/03 Magnus Sticking feathers up your but does not make you a chicken 2 stars
8/27/03 joel j. dahl it was beautiful to watch, and to listen to, and to me it seemed like watching dali paint. 4 stars
7/27/03 Jack Talented imagery does not win over the director's immaturity 2 stars
6/19/03 Ted At first I didn't like it, but it grew on me, and now I want to own it. 4 stars
6/07/03 Steve Mobia The best most profound visual work I've seen in years 5 stars
5/31/03 Heather Lovely visuals but has absolutely no meaning or worth, it's trash 1 stars
5/28/03 Eric It's about the visual language man 5 stars
5/28/03 Artist Freak So what's wrong with an occasional film series that IS art for arts sake, Chris? 4 stars
5/28/03 Astra Baxley I loved it! I'm going to get tanked before I go see the next cycle though... 5 stars
5/03/03 Renita Jao Beautiful 5 stars
4/27/03 Bluto McBlurt just because it's different, doesn't mean it's good. Or even average. Or even watchable. 1 stars
4/12/03 Linda many layers, filled with allegory, myth, look up the freemasons-intriguing connection 5 stars
4/06/03 john ted reflection of current culture 1 stars
4/05/03 Michael - not a black turtleneck wearing art student. Do yourself a favor and don't be narrow; it's different, challenging and worth some time. 4 stars
3/31/03 Michael Marston Make this the permanent exhibit at the Guggenheim and build another museum 5 stars
3/30/03 Dazza The exhibition at the Guggenheim is even worse 1 stars
3/29/03 Enrique Martinez Loved it, would like to write more but this won't allow me 5 stars
3/20/03 Patty just saw this at the Guggenheim, interesting and different, plus it had NYXHC in it! 5 stars
3/13/03 Eric Why is everyone so pissed at this guy? Who cares , at lest its something new for a change. 5 stars
3/09/03 Mary Anyone who is an art student will love this movie...or at least pretend to. It sucks! 1 stars
2/24/03 Mims Wright Everything comes together at Guggenheim 4 stars
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  25-Apr-2003 (NR)



Directed by
  Matthew Barney

Written by
  Matthew Barney

  Richard Serra
  Matthew Barney
  Aimee Mullins

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