powered by AFI
In an effort to understand the world in which he lives, poet Jean Cocteau, dressed in 18th-century clothing, contacts a scientist who is working on an invention that would enable him to enter a new dimension of time and space. After several unsuccessful attempts, the scientist finally succeeds by murdering the poet; Cocteau then rises from the dead and begins his search for identity. In a mysterious wasteland, he encounters gypsies, a man-horse, and Cégeste, the dead poet from Cocteau's film Orpheus. Cégeste offers to serve as his guide and presents him with the Flower of Folly. Although the poet would like to give the flower to Minerva, the Goddess of Reason, he first has to stand trial before underworld judges Heurtebise and the princess, also from Orpheus , and they condemn him to live. Cocteau then offers the flower to Minerva, but she kills him with a lance; again arising from the dead, the poet continues his journey. He passes the Sphynx and Oedipus, but they do not recognize each other. Later, the poet hears the roar of approaching motorcycles and assumes them to be the messengers of death; the motorcyclists, however, are merely policemen who ask for his identity card. When one of the officers drops the card, it turns into the Flower of Folly as it hits the ground and is blown away by a passing car. Cocteau then follows the bidding of Cégeste and vanishes.