Lost in La Mancha

In our discussions so far, the idea of Don Quixote as a character has been connected to the meaning the word “quixotic” holds today. It is evident to any reader of Don Quixote that the protagonist lacks any sense of practicality and prefers to live his life in his own fabricated idealist view. The other characters of the book, primarily Sancho Panza, attempt to tolerate Don Quixote’s unique perspective and coexist with his version of reality. Some characters are less tolerable, and aim more to stifle Don Quixote’s active imagination, despite the effects it has on his well-being.

 

It was interesting to see a connection to the documentary Lost in La Mancha where the director of the production, Terry Gilliam, seemed to share the same quixotic vision as the protagonist of the film and movie. His ideas for everything from costumes to set designs seemed far-fetched and almost unachieveable. The members of the production team emphasized how the director’s visions reached far beyond his sense of practicality, and how this endangered the success of the film.
Some members of the team had comments that echoed a view similar to Sancho Panza’s in Don Quixote. Even when the director himself lost complete confidence in his ability to pull off the film, one man who had previously worked with Gilliam in an unsuccessful film acted as if the quixotic vision for the film would cause no harm to its success. Others, however, tried to simplify Gilliam’s ideas.

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