Being John Malkovich

Genre: Comedy, Sci-fi and Fantasy; Starring: John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, John Malkovich; Guest Performer: Brad Pitt; Director: Spike Jonze; Author: Charlie Kaufman; Producer (group): Gramercy Pictures, Propaganda Films, Single Cell Pictures; Release Date Wide: 10/29/1999; Runtime (in minutes): 112; MPAA Rating: R; Distributor: Gramercy Pictures

The most excitingly original movie of the year. It’s set in a casually surreal version of the everyday, where puppeteer Craig Schwartz (John Cusack) discovers a portal that sucks him into the mind of John Malkovich. Before long, Craig, his wife (Cameron Diaz), and a diamond-hard office vixen (Catherine Keener) are using Malkovich as a host body, layering their identities on top of his. Director Spike Jonze works in a bustling yet deadpan pretzel-logic style, so that you never question the reality of what you’re seeing. Welcome, Jonze seems to say, to your own role-scrambled head: the 21st-century Wonderland. A

Originally posted November 12 1999 — 12:00 AM EST

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