WHAT THE BLEEP!?: DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE (Mark Vicente). 151 minutes. Opens Friday (February 17). For venues and times, see Movie Listings. Rating: NN
In this extended partial recut, director Mark Vicente has turned his originally amusing and engaging intellectual popcorn machine, What The Bleep Do We Know!?, into an ass-numbing, overlong bore.
The film strives to marry quantum mechanics with mysticism and biochemistry to promote the idea that we can attain healing enlightenment through thought.
Fun ideas, well presented by a gaggle of scientists and mystics: just don't swallow them whole. There's much specious argument and glossing of practicalities.
"Become a qi gong master and influence events two, three thousand miles away," says one physicist.
He doesn't tell us what qi gong (traditional Chinese energy work) is, let alone that its mastery takes decades.
The expansion cuts back the framing story featuring Marlee Matlin as an anxiety-ridden photographer who gains a fresh perspective. Matlin was terrific, and her adventures kept the ideas grounded and gave us a chance to absorb them. Now the talking heads get more time to provide more detail and we get less time to absorb it. This promotes neither clarity nor enjoyment. Skip it and work on your meditation skills.