7.6/10
4,941
48 user 28 critic

To vlemma tou Odyssea (1995)

Unrated | | Drama, War | 1 November 1997 (USA)
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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(screenplay), | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
A
...
S., Film Museum Curator
...
Ulysses' Wife
...
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
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:

Unrated | See all certifications »

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

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There is a scene around the 10th minute where a woman is singing a famous mourning song in Kurdish called "Ahmade Mala Musa (Ahmad of Musa family)". It is maybe referring to Kurdish refugees in Greece. See more »

Quotes

A: Good night, good night... Parting is such sweet sorrow... that I shall say good night, till it be tomorrow... sleep dwell upon thine eyes, peace in thy breasts... would I were sleep and peace, so sweet to rest... Hence will I to my ghostly father's cell... his help to crave, and my dear hap to tell!
See more »

Connections

References Falstaff (1911) See more »

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User Reviews

Nice
9 April 2002 | by See all my reviews

I think this is the good movie and that Angelopoulos was right on target when he showed his disappointment for not winning the Golden Palm during the 1995 Cannes Film Festival.

Not that the "Underground" was a bad movie. But the Gaze is better. The Gaze touches the source of the problem in the Balkan region. Balkans is a very beautiful region with wonderful landscapes and people with long history. There is where the problem is. There is too much history in the Balkans. Too many cultures, too many religions and too many political conflicts. The lost innocence of the Balkans, which the hero, the director "A" is looking for throughout the movie, is offered to the viewer through the movie's wonderful cinematography. There you see the best of Northern Greece, Macedonia, Albania, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania. Many cities have different names in different languages. Many people fight with each other too. What remains in the end is the bitter-sweat taste of a region where virtue and malice go hand in hand.

One final remark. I agree with many critics who pointed out that the movie has some technical flaws, including its extremely slow pacing. Yes the movie could have been faster a.s.o. But hey, have you ever seen a better "glance" of the lost innocence of the Balkans?

People who have visited or lived in this region can surely appreciate this motion picture even more.


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