Franta Louka is a concert cellist in Soviet-occupied Czechoslovakia, a confirmed bachelor and a lady's man. Having lost his place in the state orchestra, he must make ends meet by playing ... See full summary »
In an anonymous Dutch village, a sturdy, strong-willed matriarch looks back upon her life, the generations of family and friends gathered around her table, and ponders the cyclical nature of time.Written by
Dawn M. Barclift
For the intelligent and reflective movie-goer, there is much to appreciate about this film. To begin with, the opening narration, although fantastic, is just about the best opening line to any story out there. It immediately draws one into the world of these weird, wonderful people. And that fantastic aspect is maintained throughout the film, like a fairy tale that provides a surprise around every corner. It is a pleasure to be taken into this kind of world for the 100+ minutes of the film.
I strongly disagree with the comments, which the IMDb is currently (as of March 13/04) displaying as being "representative," which states:
"If you hold dear the innocence of children, respect God and those who serve Him, and hold dear what is beautiful in a spiritual sense, you will probably dislike this film."
That's one seriously narrow-minded opinion the IMDb people have selected as being representative. There was a time when the IMDb was more discriminating in what they allowed through to the site. That they allowed *this* posting through *and* chose it to represent the average response to the film is bad a sign; the ship is sailing but there's nobody at the wheel. Reading those comments, one could easily conclude that there are a great deal of sadly unimaginative people out there who just don't get this film.
It isn't surprising that someone with the kind of insular view of the world as expressed in those "representative" comments wouldn't enjoy this film. I never thought of it this way, but I suppose "Antonia's Line" is not for the polite, ultra-conservative, easily-offendable religious folks out there who, it seems, are more apt to feel threatened by fantastic stories like this than to appreciate them for what they are. "Antonia's Line" is the kind of story that give us permission to *imagine* how things might be if they were just slightly eschew. This film is not a picture of the real world, but, like a good fairy tale, provides one an opportunity to reflect on a variety of human conditions and experiences that everyone in some way can relate to.
In this regard, "Antonia's Line" is a wonderfully rich and rewarding film, and a beautifully well-told story.
It should not be dismissed so easily. (And the IMDb ought to get their act together.)
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