If you've ever fancied dabbling in the polo-necked world of arthouse cinema, don't pick the mysteriously titled Twilight Of The Ice Nymphs as your indie baptism. If you do, it will only affirm your suspicions that experimental arthouse rarely makes engaging cinema. This bizarre tale follows Peter Glahn, a political prisoner who returns to his family and his rural community where the "sun never sets". He becomes inextricably caught up in a complex web of relationships, involving his ostrich-farming sister, a fisherman's widow and her infatuation with a statue of Venus.
In short, Canadian director Maddin's whisking together of his extensive knowledge of cinema's language with 'the look' of wacky artist Gustav Moreau's paintings results in an ill-mixed cocktail of the nonsensical and the brain-achingly tedious. Certainly, his unconventional use of vivid '40s-style colour is stunning, and it lends a compelling surrealism, but the visual gorgeousness isn't counterbalanced with a believable narrative - which is why the audience never really gets involved in the proceedings.