This review was originally published on January 21, 2012…
Films inspired by, or outright ripping off, the classic La jetée are not uncommon. The original has a unique style and a powerful story at its core, so it’s not surprising that it resonates so strongly with filmmakers (and audiences). That said, if you told me that one of the best La jetée-inspired short films was going to be the whimsically demented tale of 2 Live Crew’s Luther Campbell… well, I’d be surprised, but then really want to see it.
Jillian Mayer’s Life and Freaky Times of Uncle Luke is just such a interpretation. The life of Luther Campbell is one fraught with everything from beheadings to obscenity hearings to nuclear meltdowns and time travel. With the imagery a combination of colorful insanity, paintings with human body parts and Campbell’s own inspired narration, the look and experience is as whacky and silly as the story itself; delightfully so.
La jetée may be a classic, thought-provoking cinematic experience, but I had way more fun watching Life and Freaky Times of Uncle Luke.