CANNON MONTH 2: Fando y Lis (1968)

I work in a basement with no windows all day, writing words for people about things that are sometimes beyond me, sitting in meetings with people way more important than me and then I take a break and write all night about all manner of subjects, sneaking in writing on this site when I can, but let me tell you, I’ve been writing so many emails that are so technical and in so many of those meetings that I felt no real will to write. And then I watched this movie — with commentary by director and writer Alejandro Jodorowsky at full blast — and let me tell you, I felt like I could write forever about anything.

Fando (Sergio Klainer) wheels Lis (Diana Mariscal) through the end of the world in search of the mythical city of Tar, a secret city that holds the true nature of enlightenment and eternity. But to get there will be a test. But man, my words are meaningless, because this can only be experienced by you. You will determine what the journey means.

Based on the memories of a play by Fernando Arrabal, the premiere at the 1968 Acapulco Film Festival became a riot, with Jodorowsky leaving the theatre by sneaking outside to a waiting limousine that was soon pelted by rocks; after sell-out showings the entire week in Mexico City, audiences continually broke into fights, leading to the Mexican government banning Fando y Lis from playing cinemas and Jodorowsky almost being deported.

Before all this, Jodorowsky was co-founder of The Panic Movement with Arrabal and Roland Topor, a guerrilla performance art that applied Antonin Artaud’s “heater Of Cruelty theories to change lives through violent theater.

In this film, he’s created a movie that makes us confront the fact that the divine could be true, as well as how insurmountable the climb to arrive there still could be. “To advance a mile, we only have to take a step. If Tar doesn’t exist, we can invent it.”

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