Rex and Saskia, a young couple in love, are on vacation. They stop at a busy service station and Saskia is abducted. After three years and no sign of Saskia, Rex begins receiving letters from the abductor.
Johanna ter Steege
In a mid-sized metropolis (population 500,000) in a right-wing military led country, a pacifist organization, which supports the opposition party in the government, is planning on holding an anti-military, nuclear disarmament rally. The organization's charismatic leader - the deputy - is scheduled to arrive in the town from the capital the day of the rally. Beyond the problems arranging the rally due to the probable incitement of violence at such a rally, the organization learns of an unconfirmed report that there will be an attempt on the deputy's life. The rally does happen, after which a three-wheeled kamikaze runs over the deputy, who eventually passes away from his injuries. The official report is that the incident was a drunken accident. In reality, the deputy's death was murder orchestrated by the secret police, the general for who likens the pacifist organization to mildew killing off agricultural crops. A magistrate is assigned to the case. Although he does have political ... Written by
Actor Jacques Perrin, who played the photojournalist, is actually an amalgam of five or six real-life reporters. The actor also acted as co-producer and was instrumental in having the production shot in Algiers. See more »
After Georges Géret as Nick is hit on the front of the head, he holds the back of it. See more »
Concurrently, the military banned long hair on males; mini-skirts; Sophocles; Tolstoy; Euripedes; smashing glasses after drinking toasts; labor strikes; Aristophanes; Ionesco; Sartre; Albee; Pinter; freedom of the press; sociology; Beckett; Dostoyevsky; modern music; popular music; the new mathematics; and the letter "Z", which in ancient Greek means "He is alive!"
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When the preview of "Z" was shown at the Oscars, it received a standing ovation. I didn't know why until I saw the movie. The Oscar forced it to be shown in the United States. At the time, the US backed the military government in Greece. The totalitarian government represented a stand against communism. This movie depicts the true story of a beloved olympic athlete who became a doctor and began speaking out against his Greek government. For that, he was murdered. This is about a brave investigator who begins to search for the origin of the orders to have the doctor killed.
It leads to the downfall of a country. Mikis Theordorakis wrote the music from house arrest in Greece and it was smuggled out to be placed on the film. Yves Montand played the lead role and was blacklisted from getting a US Visa for his participation until some strings were pulled and he was allowed a 24 hour visa, to be extended each 24 hours in order to allow him to film "On A Clear Day You Can See Forever". At the end of filming,that night he made a surprise appearance on Johnny Carson's Tonight Show. He told the story about "Z" and commented that he was in the care and custody of US Immigration and the FBI. The camera panned right and a dark suited man slid quickly behind the curtain. He apologized for his abruptness, but his visa expired at midnight and he had to get to the airport. When I saw these things, I was shocked my government would take a movie so seriously. When it showed up in an obscure movie theater in Houston, I had to go. I was the only person buying a ticket just after noon that day. Upon entering the theater, a dark suited man was sitting in the lobby. I walked into theater and then stuck my head back out to see what the only other individual in the theater was doing. He was stepping away from the ticket booth. I watched as he walked the short distance to my car, took out a notebook and wrote in it while looking at my license plate. This is how it happened. It was 1969. J. Edgar Hoover had stated publicly that no truly loyal American would pay money to see such a movie. It was unpatriotic. Newspaper articles that spring reported it.
Watch this movie and consider the importance "entertainment" can have on government, media, and yourself.
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