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Terry Gilliam’s “The Zero Theorem,” like most of his films, focuses on the all-too-thin line between sanity and insanity, reality and delusion. Its steampunk-meets-cyberpunk visual style is a wonderful jumble that’s reminiscent of his much loved “Brazil,” with touches like a computer mainframe that looks like a blast furnace, or personally targeted advertising blasting commercials for The Church of Batman the Redeemer.

At its heart, though, it’s a portrait of a hikikomori, the Japanese term for shut-ins who almost entirely disconnect from the outside world, refusing to leave their rooms and existing in isolation. While this is a very modern phenomenon, Gilliam makes the connection to ancient monastic solitude explicit by placing his tonsured hero in an abandoned cathedral that has been converted into a hacker’s den, all stained glass, gleaming monitors and fluttering pigeons.

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