The Monkey's Mask

The Monkey's Mask ★★

so, a short autobiographical note: one time i was messing around with an AI chatbot and asked it to compile a top 10 list of pinocchio movies for reasons i can no longer remember. its response consisted of some real movies, a couple of hallucinations, and... The Monkey's Mask (2000)... an r-rated australian lesbian crime thriller. seems like a typical AI mistake at first, but, well, could it be? could The Monkey's Mask have pinocchio in it? it certainly did not look like a direct adaptation, but maybe the movie just referenced the classic italian children's novel in some other way, as some sort of esoteric metaphor.

after letting it sit on my watchlist for a while, i simply had to know. while seeming like a pretty standard lesbian crime verse novel adaptation in its first half, The Monkey's Mask did make several references to children's literature. so... could it be? could mr. pinocchio himself show up? could he even be responsible for the murder of mickey norris???

anyway pinocchio was, in fact, not in The Monkey's Mask and was not even mentioned once. fuck you, ChatGPT

It's also not a very good movie. The film's sharp but conventional cinematography can't match the poetic ambitions of its source material, and its attempts to compensate by calling attention to the unreality of the text fall flat. The performances are all over the place as the actors struggle to understand the confused tone. The crime drama itself is nothing to write home about – simultaneously predictable and driven by contrivances. And Pinocchio is not in it.

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