Cirque Du Soleil: Dralion

"Weak"

Cirque Du Soleil: Dralion Review


Cirque du Soleil is back with this direct-to-video production, Dralion, 89 minutes of jumping, flying, dancing, and wordless gags that will leave you either breathless or, in my case, fumbling for a vial of Tylenol.

Typical of any Cirque production, Dralion features a jaw-dropping and expansive litany of acrobatic stunts, presented in rapid-fire succession so that you never know what's coming at you. A martial arts-style performance with flags for swords will be succeeded by a juggler with seven balls in the air. A trapeze act will abut a gaggle of little Asian girls who stack themselves five-high on one another's shoulders. For comic relief, "clowns" will come out and goof around -- the best part of the video being a short, bald man who picks someone out of the crowd to use as an unwitting ally in his own stunts (though later the "audience member" turns out to be a Cirque troupe performer).

Sounds good so far. Alas, the problem with Dralion is not in its action, it's with its filmmaking. While the filmmakers should be congratulated for having so many cameras, the editor should be shot for feeling compelled to cut among them every couple of seconds. Flash! We're in a wide shot overlooking the arena. Flash! We're on a close-up of a performer's agonized face. Flash! We're watching one of the singers who would otherwise be in the background. Flash! We're looking at a kid in the audience eating cotton candy. Flash! We're back to the wide shot.

This rapid-fire editing is incessant, never pausing for a minute, and stands as one of the worst examples of cutting a film together I've ever seen. Not only does this detract from the performance, it makes it virtually impossible to see what's going on altogether. The use of video to capture the goings on doesn't help either, lending a Circus of the Stars feel to the proceedings. Like most Cirque films, the actual acrobatics are fun and fine, but the way they are presented simply blows. Literally, watching the film gave me a headache inside of 25 minutes.

And that's got to hurt more than trying to balance your whole body on one arm.

One-armed flyer.



Cirque Du Soleil: Dralion

Facts and Figures

Run time: 89 mins

In Theaters: Saturday 4th August 2001

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

IMDB: 8.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: David Mallet

Producer: Rocky Oldham

Starring: Luan Leilei as Single hand balancing performer, Luis Pelegrini as Yao, God of Fire, Juliana Neves as Azala Goddess of Air, Henriette Gbou as Gaya, Goddess of Earth, Joe De Pal as Clown, Sheetal Gandhi as Oceane, Goddess of Water, Viktor Kee as Juggler

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