7.5/10
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18 user 19 critic

The Falls (1980)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Sci-Fi | 24 July 1996 (France)
92 BBC documentary-style shorts that record the lives of 92 victims of the VUE (Violent Unexplained Event), each with last names beginning with "Fall."

Director:

Peter Greenaway

Writer:

Peter Greenaway
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Westley Peter Westley
Aad Wirtz Aad Wirtz
Michael Murray Michael Murray
Lorna Poulter Lorna Poulter
Patricia Carr Patricia Carr
Adam Leys Adam Leys ... Narrator
Mary Howard Mary Howard
Sheila Canfield Sheila Canfield ... Narrator
Evelyn Owen Evelyn Owen
Hilarie Thompson ... Narrator (as Hilary Thompson)
Carole Meyer Carole Meyer
Monica Hyde Monica Hyde
Colleen Thomas Colleen Thomas
Neil Hopkins Neil Hopkins
Dewi Thomas Dewi Thomas
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Storyline

The planet has been affected by a mysterious occurrence known as the Violent Unknown Event, or V.U.E. It has caused immortality and disability. Victims have learned new and peculiar languages. Some firmly believe in the responsibility of birds. In this three-hour film, ninety-two biographies are presented of victims whose surnames begin with the letters F A L L. Presented in the mock documentary style of 'Water Wrackets' and 'Dear Phone', this is the culmination of the first period of Greenaway's work. It refers to shorts such as 'A Walk Through H' and 'Vertical Features Remake', and forwards to the likes of 'Drowning by Numbers' (there is reference to the three generations of Cissie Colpitts). Michael Nyman's sound-track is memorable; he later remade the 'Bird List Song' (which features in a variety of forms), as 'Hands 2 Take' with arty British band the Flying Lizards (best known for their minimal version of 'Money (that's what I want)'. Written by D.Giddings <darren.giddings@newcastle.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

cinema | disaster | mutants | parody | bird | See All (14) »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Dutch | French | German

Release Date:

24 July 1996 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Balesetek krónikája See more »

Filming Locations:

Abersoch, Gwynedd, Wales, UK

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The recurrences of the number 92 throughout the film (the number of VUE victims, the number of artificial languages, etc.) was partly intended as a homage to composer John Cage's "Indeterminacy", which Greenaway believed contained 92 stories. Cage later informed the director that there were only 90 sections and was much amused by Greenaway's error. See more »

Connections

References Three Days of the Condor (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

A Three Hour Shaggy Dog Story
2 September 2001 | by rand-4See all my reviews

I'm a big fan of Greenaway's works and I jumped at the chance to check out this early work by the director on video.

I can't add to what others have said here except to say that it's an excrutiating experience that doesn't have enough humor to keep your interest for the full running time.

At its best, "The Falls" is an interesting and sometimes funny curiosity that points to themes Greenaway would return to again and again in his later work; at its worst, "The Falls" is a tedious experiment.


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