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Ulysses' Gaze (1995)
"To vlemma tou Odyssea" (original title)

 -  Drama | War  -  1 November 1997 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 3,682 users  
Reviews: 49 user | 24 critic

A, a Greek filmmaker living in exile in the United States, returns to his native Ptolemas to attend a special screening of one of his extremely controversial films. But A's real interest ... See full summary »

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Title: Ulysses' Gaze (1995)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
A
...
S., Film Museum Curator
...
'Ulysses' Wife
Thanasis Vengos ...
Taxi Driver
Giorgos Mihalakopoulos ...
Friend and Journalist
Costas Santas
Dora Volanaki ...
Old Woman
Mania Papadimitriou
Giorgos Konstas
Thanos Grammenos
Alekos Oudinotis
Angel Ivanof
Ljuba Tadic
Vaggelis Liodakis
Gert Llanaj
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Storyline

A, a Greek filmmaker living in exile in the United States, returns to his native Ptolemas to attend a special screening of one of his extremely controversial films. But A's real interest lies elsewhere--the mythical reels of the very first film shot by the Manakia brothers, who, at the dawn of the age of cinema, tirelessly criss-crossed the Balkans and, without regard for national and ethnic strife, recorded the region's history and customs. Did these primitive, never-developed images really exist? If so, where are they? - "Why A? It's an alphabetical choice. Every filmmaker remembers the first time he looked through the viewfinder of a camera. It is a moment that is not so much the discovery of cinema--but the discovery of the world. But there comes a moment when the filmmaker begins to doubt his own capacity to see things, when he no longer knows if his gaze is right and innocent." --Theo Angelopoulos Written by Frank Wallner <wallnerf@informatik.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Release Date:

1 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ulysses' Gaze  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$42,202 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Part II of "A Trilogy of Borders". See more »

Quotes

Niko: The first thing God created was the journey, then came doubt, and nostalgia.
See more »

Connections

References The Birth of a Nation (1915) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very successful mix of political and personal history
27 July 2004 | by (germany) – See all my reviews

Justly famous for being one of the last remaining directors still doing extraordinary cinema, in this film Angelopoulos celebrates the end of Communism in Eastern Europe, while, at the same time, looking with touching sensitivity into the lives of people molded by recent (and less recent) History. Some of the scenes related to History have already become classic, but, personally, I was more impressed by the description of the way this History affected individuals and families. Although the media has covered so amply the tragic events in the Balkans and (to a lesser extent) the external aspects of people's life, very little has been said about more human aspects which, after all, will keep affecting them for many, many years to come. In my opinion, this film offers the most complete, convincing and respectful take on the affected people's emotions, memories and relations among the (few) films, documentaries and books touching on the theme.

The scale is epic both geographically and chronologically and since Angelopoulos manages to move easily between dream and reality (one of the biggest problems facing cinema directors), the personal stories are nicely interwoven with History. Angelopoulos' characteristic long takes, in this instance serve more than giving the film a poetic atmosphere. It is necessary for his goal of looking carefully on individuals' lives and describe their joys and sorrows.

In terms of execution, there were some flaws (especially in technicalities of directing of actors) but, frankly, I don't mind that, if the alternative is perfectly executed films but lacking interesting ideas.


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