Film: Eternity and a Day

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Film:

Eternity and a Day: (Mia aioniotita kai mia mera)

Director: Theo Angelopoulos
Honors:
Genres:
Distributor: New Yorker Video

Acclaimed Greek director Theo Angelopoulos (Ulysses’ Gaze) won the Palm d’Or at the 1998 Cannes film festival for his extended rumination on the conflict between life and art, Eternity and a Day. Bruno Ganz (Wings of Desire) stars as Alexander, a reclusive, terminally ill writer who rescues a young Albanian refugee and embarks and a dreamlike odyssey into his own past. Comparisons to Bergman’s Wild Strawberries leap to mind here—Alexander remains old and bearded even as he interacts with his wife (Isabelle Renauld) and family as they…

Reviews

Barnes and Noble

Acclaimed Greek director Theo Angelopoulos (Ulysses’ Gaze) won the Palm d’Or at the 1998 Cannes film festival for his extended rumination on the conflict between life and art, Eternity and a Day. Bruno Ganz (Wings of Desire) stars as Alexander, a reclusive, terminally ill writer who rescues a young Albanian refugee and embarks and a dreamlike odyssey into his own past. Comparisons to Bergman’s Wild Strawberries leap to mind here—Alexander remains old and bearded even as he interacts with his wife (Isabelle Renauld) and family as they were 30 years before—and Wenders’s Wings of Desire comes to mind as well, as Alexander stalks through the entire film in the same overcoat. But Eternity and a Day has a strange texture all its own, as Angelopoulos employs glacially slow zooms and tracking shots, accompanied by haunting, meditative music to create an eerie sense of timelessness. Ganz suits the material well, his etched, sagelike face revealing depths of personal pain and regret while radiating an aura of ancient wisdom. Eternity is permeated with the loneliness of an artist who has sacrificed intimacy with his family to follow his muse, even as it strikes a delicate balance between regret and redemption. Gregory Baird

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