Although it's full of stylistic hallmarks we've come to expect from Gilliam — layered realities, overbearing technology, institutional paranoia and of course, quirky romance – it feels like a personal journey into his beliefs, as it stares into the divide between reason and faith.
Living in an Orwellian corporate world where "mancams" serve as the eyes of a shadowy figure known only as Management, Leth works on a solution to the strange theorem while living as a virtual cloistered monk in his home—the shattered interior of a fire-damaged chapel. His isolation and work are interrupted now and then by surprise visits from Bainsley, a flamboyantly lusty love interest who tempts him with "tantric biotelemetric interfacing" (virtual sex) and Bob. Latter is the rebellious whiz-kid teenage son of Management who, with a combination of insult-comedy and an evolving true friendship, spurs on Qohen’s efforts at solving the theorem. … Bob creates a virtual reality "inner-space" suit that will carry Qohen on an inward voyage, a close encounter with the hidden dimensions and truth of his own soul, wherein lie the answers both he and Management are seeking. The suit and supporting computer technology will perform an inventory of Qohen’s soul, either proving or disproving the Zero Theorem.
Like most life lessons, the answers to Qohen's problems are hidden in plain sight. But the fact that they're there at all marks the difference between a film with a nihilistic attitude about human existence, and one that believes in the idea that there are many reasons to live, both great and small. Like a great professor who makes complicated ideas easy to understand, and more importantly, fun to think about, Gilliam boils down basic questions about human existence to a series of weirdly relatable physical conflicts, which is why "The Zero Theorem" dances on the edge of nothingness, and manages to find something incredibly powerful to say.
Movie in English with subtitles in Latvian and Russian.
Festivāls "Baltijas pērle"
Christoph Waltz, Mélanie Thierry, David Thewlis, Lucas Hedges, Matt Damon, Ben Whishaw, Tilda Swinton
Baltic pearl, IMDB, Facebook, Official site