Ledger's Last Role: Decent But Unspectacular
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2009 12:55 PM CDT
In this image released by Poopoo Pictures, Heath Ledger is shown in a scene from "The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus."   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus made its debut at Cannes to much buzz today, mainly because Heath Ledger died in the midst of filming. Critics say Ledger does nice—if short—work, while the fantasy itself is so-so.

  • Richard Corliss, Time: "Ledger is fine, parading loads of his grinning charisma, though the part offers him no last-testament revelation." The movie, however, is "mostly dismal."
  • Emma Jones, the BBC: "As for Ledger, it feels like a post-script performance—he's only in the movie for a third of the time and even if he had lived to complete it, it wouldn't be chalked up as one of his most memorable films."

  • Ray Bennett, the Hollywood Reporter: "It's hard not to wonder how much better the film would have been with a complete performance by the charismatic and adventurous Ledger."
  • James Christopher, the Times of London: "In the scenes he did complete, Ledger is a marvel to watch." The film is "visually stunning" but needs "a lot more hard story and a lot less whimsy."