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A journalist researching a documentary in the Sahara Desert meets a gunrunner who dies suddenly. When the journalist notices that they have a similar appearance, he assumes the recently deceased's identity and accepts the consequences that it brings. Written by
The entire movie is supposed to have taken place in just one day, this is the reason that the film has no night-time scenes. Director Michelangelo Antonioni mentioned the fact in a 1986 interview, where he said "Actually the entire story takes place in a short period of one day, from early morning until some time before sunset." See more »
Your question are much more revealing about yourself than my answer would be about me.
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One of Jack Nicholson's best but also least known films, `The Passenger' or `Professione: Reporter' is a haunting examination of the desire to escape and start afresh and is without doubt Antonioni's best English language film, eclipsing both `Blowup' and `Zabriskie Point'. Nicholson's role as a world-weary television journalist (David Locke) isn't a particularly demanding one but it is fascinating to see him give a performance so different from anything else we have seen from him and one which is much better than the horny little devil efforts he has sadly specialised in since `One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'.
Some may find the opening twenty minutes of the film, where there is virtually no dialogue, hard-going but this perfectly illustrates the sparse and confusing environment of the North African desert where the film begins. We are also treated to a marvellous scene between Locke and the man whose identity he later assumes where a tape recording and flashback are ingeniously merged into one and then separated again. Antonioni creates a mood that is almost indefinable throughout, a kind of hollow detachment which is exactly the perspective that Locke has on the world which has gradually worn him down yet the director still manages to conjure up power and simple romance between Locke and the girl he meets who is played by Maria Schneider. The film was not a hit at the box-office which is not surprising considering it's uncommercial style but artistically and cinematically it is a triumph of innovation.
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