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Marina Antunes [Celluloid 05.27.14] scifi animation

It's surprising that Ari Folman's The Congress, an imaginative adaptation of Stanislaw Lem's novel, has yet to see the light of day outside the festival circuit. True, reception for the movie has been mixed and our own review found the story a bit too far removed from Lem's original and the visual approach only partly successful but there seems to be enough here to warrant some sort of release and it looks like that release is nearly upon us.

In the movie's first half, Robin Wright plays a version of herself whose career hasn't been as successful as early movies suggested. With a sick son to think about, Wright takes a job offer from a sleazy producer played by Danny Huston, who scans Wright, complete with body, soul and idiosyncrasies, into a computer which will then generate a digital character than can be used for pretty much anything. Basically, she's turned into a hologram in order to creep out humanity whenever we see the near-representation of her. The movie then fasts forward 20 years and starts to borrow from Lem's novel in that Wright is asked to speak at The Futurological Congress, a convention where everyone takes a drug that turns everything into a cartoon.

We've already seen a trailer for The Congress but I must admit I didn't really get what the movie was about until this new trailer.

The Congress opens in limited release on August 29.

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