The Zero Theorem runs in a counter-parallel universe to Terry Gilliam’s masterwork, Brazil, a film he’s dedicated a career to remaking. Qohen (Christoph Waltz) is assigned the task of solving the titular hypothesis, an equation that by its very nature – everything adds up to nothing – is impossible to prove. The film’s biggest shortcomings land squarely in the comedy and romance departments. Qohen hooks up with Bainsley (Mélanie Thierry) a smattery fetish model who draws the line at prostitution (“I don’t do intercourse”). Even if there was palpable chemistry between Bainsley and Qoheh, there’s nothing underneath to give the film the exotic charge of its predecessor. One critic referred to the film as “underfunded.” Hallelujah! In this case, a bigger budget would only have led to larger scale calamity. Ten years down the road, not even a 3 disc Criterion set of the restored director’s cut will inform what isn’t there. (2014) — Scott Marks
This movie is not currently in theaters.