Present-day parable of Paradise Found and Paradise Lost: more precisely, a legendary island Shangri-La somewhere near Thailand (from the air it looks like Never-Never Land in Disney's Peter Pan, meaning, among other things, that it looks painted instead of photographed), home to a Hippie Commune cum Club Med, as well as, less idyllically, a fearsome foursome of marijuana farmers. Filmmaker Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, A Life Less Ordinary) deserves credit for putting some ruts and potholes in the path of the Leonardo DiCaprio fan club, and the actor himself deserves credit for putting some distance between himself and the Titanic heart-throb. All the same, the youth audience will find itself much comforted and catered-to: a good deal of MTV visuals (a slo-mo underwater moonlight kiss, a bellicose fantasy scene in the cartoon style of a video game, a zombie nightmare scene, etc.), and a good deal of MTV music in accompaniment. Not to mention the good deal of mesmerized star-gazing at DiCaprio's honey-glazed (and squeezably plumped-up) physique. Soft soap of this type runs all the way through the movie -- far too long and far too deep for it to be construed as a subtle trap to lure the youth crowd into the classroom of Hard Truths. With Virginie Ledoyen and Tilda Swinton. 2000.

Duncan Shepherd

This movie is not currently in theaters.

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