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The Tattoos of THE NUMBER 23
In the mystery-thriller 23, actor Jim Carrey takes a dramatic turn as dual characters in this strange story of the number twenty-three. He portrays both a "real" and a "fictional" character in the story. One is a mild-mannered dog catcher, and the other is a tattooed, saxophone-playing noir detective.
In the main story, Carrey is Walter Sparrow, an otherwise ordinary animal control officer. On his birthday, he gets a call to catch a dog just as he is supposed to go meet his wife for the evening. While she waits for him, she comes across a strange book in a bookstore called THE NUMBER 23, authored by Topsy Kretts, and she decides to buy it for him as his present. As Walter starts to read the book, he becomes obsessed with similarities between the main character, named Fingerling, and himself... and with the number 23.
Fingerling is who you see here in these pictures. He's got a large tattoo down his left arm, almost a full tattoo sleeve. The work is of a stylized rose branch with the end of the branch piercing a large red heart on his forearm. In this screen capture from the trailer, you can see the work extends across the left shoulder and onto his back. The design shows a lot of influence similar to designs from the Borneon Dyak style of tattooing that is the basis for most of the modern American tribal-style of tattooing.
In the novel, Fingerling meets a woman called the "Suicide Blonde," who murders her own husband and then takes her own life. The book ends with chapter 22, as Fingerling debates whether or not he should take his own life. Walter continues to obsess over the number and the book, and winds up going into an investigation of the author and himself. The movie ends with a twist, which I won't give away here for those of you who haven't seen it.
If you'd like to know how it all ends, check out THE NUMBER 23 on DVD or visit the official movie site.
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