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Richard E. Grant,
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José Luis Guerín
The life of a great city (Paris) from dawn until dusk, including the beautiful and the ragged, the rich and the poor, with little or no comment (intertitles) from the director, Cavalcanti (whose first film this was).
From a very specific premise (a documentary on the construction of a new building in Barcelona's "barrio chino") Guerin has produced a film that is surprisingly comprehensive and universal.
A huge range of subjects and characters are present in the film (children, teenagers, homeless, the old, immigrants, drug addicts,prostitutes, etc) giving them an extraordinary metaphorical significance without departing from the documentary approach.
Shot in static shots (except for the marvellous and hopeful final tracking shot) and edited from 120 hours of footage with Guerin's characteristic precision, rhythm and visual poetry.
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