Cult Director Alejandro Jodorowsky Gets Retrospective at Munich Film Festival

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Alejandro Jodorowsky.

The 84-year-old Chilean is the subject of Frank Pavich’s documentary “Jodorowsky’s Dune.”

BERLIN – Cult octogenarian director Alejandro Jodorowsky will get the first retrospective of his work at this year’s Munich International Film Festival. Munich also will show Jordorwsky’s latest, The Dance of Reality, and autobiographical drama about his childhood in 1930s Chile. The film, which premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight sidebar in Cannes, is Jodorowsky’s first feature since the fantasy drama The Rainbow Thief in 1990.

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Jodorowsky is credited by many for creating the Midnight Movies phenomenon with the bloody, surreal Western El Topo (1970). The film’s success led John Lennon to put up $1 million toward Jodorowsky’s similarly trippy The Holy Mountain, a success in France, though not so globally. His attempt to do a big-budget adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi classic Dune (in 1974, a decade before David Lynch’s poorly received version) ended in disaster. The story of the film that might have been is told in Frank Pavich’s documentary Jodorowsky’s Dune, which premiered in Cannes and will screen in Munich as part of the retrospective.

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Munich will screen all of Jodorowsky’s movies, from his first short, La Cravate (1957), and debut feature, Fando and Lis: Tar Babies (1968), to the drama Tusk (1980) and the horror film Santa Sangre (1989).

Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn, who cites Jodorowsky as one of his greatest inspirations, also will attend Munich with his Cannes competition entry Only God Forgives. Refn dedicated Forgives to Jodorowsky and has said he is working on a feature adaptation of the cult director's dystopian comic series The Incal.

Refn and Jodorowsky will take part in Munich’s "Filmmakers Live" public discussion June 29.