At Zabriskie Point, United States' lowest point, two perfect strangers meet; an undergraduate dreamer and a young hippie student who start off an unrestrained romance, making love on the dusty terrain.
In the suburbs of Rome, the translator Vittoria breaks her engagement with her boyfriend, the writer Ricardo, after a troubled night. Vittoria goes downtown to meet her mother, who is addicted to the stock market, and she meets the broker Piero on a day of crash. The materialist Piero and the absent Vittoria begin a monosyllabic relationship.Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
At 1:28:30 into the film, Vittoria and Piero get wet from a sprinkler. The right side of Piero's jacket is clearly wet. A minute later when they are listening to the piano player, the back of Vittoria's blouse is still wet, but Piero's jacket is dry. See more »
The six million Negroes want to throw out the 60,000 whites. We're lucky they're still in trees and have barely lost their tails or they'd have already thrown us out.
About time, too.
I'll just say one thing. There are about ten leaders who've studied at Oxford. The others are all monkeys - six million monkeys.
But if you like it there, they must be charming monkeys.
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West German theatrical version was cut by approx. three minutes. See more »
From the beginning, Vittoria is seen in agitation. A fan blows her hair, she doesn't fit in the frame of many shots, or is caught actually in another world via a mirror. She is constantly gazing outside, she is like an electron trying to gain enough escape velocity to get away from the silent stagnant relationship she is in with Riccardo.
Most of us know this...the end of a relationship...the vacillation between pain and numbness and irritation. It was very eerily depicted in the opening of this film, you almost sense there is something bigger going on. The stark shots outside, I didn't realize it was early morning at first, so it almost seemed like an apocalyptic sci-fi start. I wondered if somehow an eclipse, based on the title, had caused all the people on earth to vanish. Music concrete added to the alien aura.
But really it was just the affair, not civilization, that had collapsed.
Even once Vittoria breaks free, we often see her captured behind bars via Antonioni's ever clever camera work. A sense of restlessness still pursues her, as the winds stir the world around her. A whirlwind romance with Piero has its moments of pleasure, but still something seems amiss.
The only scene that I found serene took place at the airport. Did others feel that way as well? If so, why?
Is this a film that cites the vagaries of life, the gusts of lust, the hot air tornado of the stock market? Is the answer to somehow find a way to ride the air, rather than be blown hither and thither?
In the few Antonioni films I have seen, I do love how the "plot" can drift as much as the characters. Indeed there was a point where I thought the film would just leave Vittoria in the dust, and follow someone else. I don't think I was as smitten with her as I should have been, although her coquetry was at times sublime. Hello torn strap of the dress! But their affair has very little beyond the chase, her talk of love seemed ludicrous to me.
The overlong shots of the stock exchange were exasperating yet enthralling simultaneously. If that is the crowning achievement of man, then we are indeed doomed. Money for money's sake alone...sickening. Maybe that is the contrast to the simple conquest of the air via flight?
This film certainly caught my eye, scenes linger - the car being towed out of the lake (another doppleganger?) - the balloon being shot out of the sky - the investor who lost a lot, but not his ability to doodle but ultimately for me, this film didn't quite take off.
6/10 Thurston Hunger
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