Greek director Nicos Koundouros' Vortex is a confusing yet breathtaking puzzle.
"Vortex" is a very bizarre and experimental Greek film; with a style thats reminiscent of Bergman, Antonioni, early Polanski, Jodorowsky and Arrabal. To be honest, it's really hard to describe. "Vortex" is a movie within a movie and is shown out of sequence with repeated takes. The story gets interrupted repeatedly with the click of the director's marquis. He yells "Vortex, Take 20 etc. etc. etc."! So it's hard to decipher if a story is taking place or if your watching behind the scenes of a movie. What's surprising is that the film was made in 1966 and contains both frontal male and female nudity, a lengthy sex scene and even the use of the F-word. (the only version I know about exists in English) It was hard to tell what the exact plot was; the story also had something to do with the Greek myth of Medusa. It seemed to be about friends on vacation and going on a sort of boating trip. One man asks the girl if she has seen his brother? Then the film has a flashback of the brother's sexual encounter with the beautiful lady while in England. They then here news that the brother is now dead. Scenes keep repeating themselves over and over, but along the way we're treated to a good looking Greek cast, bizarre images and beautiful architecture . The film is shot in black and white and images appear to jump right out because of the chiaroscuro landscapes. The film's music is haunting and mystical. Among the scenes that I remembered the most were; the skull on the scarecrow, face painting while the performance of bongo drums, and the female actress reattaching the leg of a creepy doll in the water. "Vortex" was very ahead of its time in its on screen portrayal of sexuality. "Vortex" is very unique; I wonder why it has seemed to of faded into obscurity?
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