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Alice in the Cities (1974)
"Alice in den Städten" (original title)

8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 4,422 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 24 critic

A German journalist is saddled with a nine-year-old girl after encountering her mother at a New York airport.

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Title: Alice in the Cities (1974)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Rüdiger Vogler ...
Yella Rottländer ...
Alice
Lisa Kreuzer ...
Lisa - Alice's Mother (as Elisabeth Kreuzer)
Edda Köchl ...
Angela - Friend in New York
Ernest Boehm ...
Publisher
Sam Presti ...
Car Dealer
Lois Moran ...
Airport Hostess
Didi Petrikat ...
Friend in Frankfurt
Hans Hirschmüller ...
Police Officer
Sibylle Baier ...
The Woman
Mirko
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Storyline

German journalist Philip Winter has a case of writer's block when trying to write an article about the United States. He decides to return to Germany, and while trying to book a flight, encounters a German woman and her nine year old daughter Alice doing the same. The three become friends (almost out of necessity) and while the mother asks Winter to mind Alice temporarily, it quickly becomes apparent that Alice will be his responsibility for longer than he expected. After returning to Europe, the innocent friendship between Winter and Alice grows as they travel together through various European cities on a quest for Alice's grandmother. Written by Karl Engel <cassiel@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

journalist | germany | airport | city | travel | See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

17 May 1974 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Alice in the Cities  »

Box Office

Budget:

DEM 500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The novel "Tender is the Night" by F. Scott Fitzgerald is seen on the coffee table of Phil Winter's girlfriend. A character in the novel, Rosemary Hoyt, was inspired by Fitzgerald's affair with actress Lois Moran, who appears in this film as an airport hostess. See more »

Goofs

At 59:17 when Alice is coming out of the toilet, the door handle in the close-up is reverse (l-r) compared with the next shot when she opens the door. See more »

Quotes

Lisa - Alice's Mother: What are you writing?
Philip 'Phil' Winter: The inhuman thing about American TV is not so much that they hack everything up with commercials, though that's bad enough, but in the end all programmes become commercials. Commercials for the status quo. Every image radiates the same disgusting and nauseated message. A kind of boastful contempt. Not one image leaves you in peace, they all want something from you.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Story of Film: An Odyssey: Episode #1.10 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Road Again
Written by Floyd Jones and Alan Wilson
Performed by Canned Heat
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Wenders: In His Prime
6 December 2008 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

http://eattheblinds.blogspot.com/

Between the years 1971 and 1977, Wim Wenders could do no wrong. Yet, even with his best films already on the screen, mainstream success eluded him until 1984, when his over- romanticized Paris, Texas (a fanboy-esquire ode to John Ford and the American landscape) established him as one of Cannes' most beloved filmmakers. Perhaps as a result of commercial success coming from his sappiest work to date, Wenders' chased a tangent that spiraled into career insignificance after 1993's Faraway, So Close! By the mid-late 90's, Wenders' films (documentaries excluded) became achingly pretentious and ripe for parody.

Back in his prime, 1974's Alice in the Cities / Alice in den Städten foreshadowed the near perfection to come in 1976's Kings of the Road / Im Lauf der Zeit. Overshadowed by KOTR, AITC has been overlooked, yet despite its smaller scale, budget and running time, it addresses many of the same themes common to Wenders' best films. The most prevalent of these recurring themes is: der angst (translated: Fear). All of Wenders characters are driven by a fate defined by either Kierkegaard and/or Heidegger's notion of what fear is. Wenders' Angst is the German equivalent of what Existentialism was to the French New Wave, powerful philosophical themes that would ultimately shape the direction of their respective cinematic movements.

If asked to recommend a series of films every fan of cinema should see, I wouldn't hesitate to suggest the films Wenders made between 71-77 (in addition to 1982's The State of Things / Der Stand der Dinge). In my mind these films are meditative, visually hypnotic and poignant essays that speak volumes on the human condition and of film-making itself. These films have inspired me tremendously and if you're a fan of Jim Jarmusch, discovering these films will feel like uncovering a hidden cache of his films. Jarmusch owes a great debt to Wenders both as an inspiration but also as a donor, since it was the short ends from State of Things that enabled Jarmusch to make his exceptional second feature Stranger Than Paradise. If you haven't already seen these films, make the effort...you will be happy you did: The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick /Alice in the Cities / Wrong Move / Kings of the Road / The American Friend.


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