In the Napoleonic wars, an officer finds an old book that relates his grandfather's story, Alfons van Worden, captain in the Walloon guard. A man of honor and courage, he seeks the shortest route through the Sierra Morena. At an inn, the Venta Quemada, he sups with two Islamic princesses. They call him their cousin and seduce him; he wakes beside corpses under a gallows. He meets a hermit priest and a goatherd; each tells his story; he wakes again by the gallows. He's rescued from the Inquisition, meets a cabalist and hears more stories within stories, usually of love. He returns to Venta Quemada, the women await with astonishing news.Written by
Originally released in a cut version in the US, the film was restored to it's original 182-minutes running time and premiered at the New York Film Festival in September 1997. The restoration project, supervised by Edith Kramer, was initially sponsored by Grateful Dead's leader Jerry Garcia and later completed by Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorsese. The restored version includes a dedication to Jerry Garcia. See more »
I saw this one on TV many years ago and I was captivated! In the second change I had, I recored it on video and when my cassete was destroyed, I made a hopeless search in the internet, only to find that soon I could buy it on DVD. And I did. I just can't get away from this masterpiece of cinematography. Based on a book, clearly inspired from the 1001 nights, telling a story inside a story, inside a story (I love this), with a lot of Jorge Louis Borges magic I guess, celebrates the true joy of cinema, where nothing is more important that watch the film itself! The story is incredible, but just, doesn't matter! All I want with this one, is to see it again and again, not trying to understand the dark parts of it, or the connections between the stories, or to find my way out of the labyrinth that is build around you as you continue more inside its plot, but just to loose myself in it, be a part of it, and not wish to get out.
Not for everyone, but probably a great choice if you don't like Chuck Norris too much!
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