By Andrew Horton
Greek movie director Theo Angelopoulos is without doubt one of the so much influential and extensively revered filmmakers on the planet this present day, but his motion pictures are nonetheless principally unknown to the yank public. within the first e-book in English to target Angelopoulos's exact cinematic imaginative and prescient, Andrew Horton presents an illuminating contextual examine that makes an attempt to illustrate the quintessentially Greek nature of the director's paintings. Horton situates the director within the context of over 3,000 years of Greek tradition and background. just a little like Andrei Tarkovsky in Russia or Antonioni in Italy, Angelopoulos has used cinema to discover the heritage and person identities of his tradition. With such far-reaching affects as Greek delusion, old tragedy and epic, Byzantine iconography and rite, Greek and Balkan heritage, smooth Greek popular culture together with bouzouki tune, shadow puppet theater, and the Greek track corridor culture, Angelopoulos emerges as an unique "thinker" with the digital camera, and a particular director who's guaranteed to make a long-lasting contribution to the artwork form.
In a sequence of flicks together with The traveling Players, Voyage to Cythera, Landscape within the Mist, The Suspended Step of the Stork, and such a lot lately in Ulysses' Gaze starring Harvey Keitel (winner of the 1995 Cannes movie pageant Grand Prix), Angelopoulos has built a awesome cinematic kind, characterised by way of rigorously composed scenes and an immense variety of prolonged lengthy photographs. In an age of ever reducing awareness spans, Angelopoulos bargains a cinema of contemplation.
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Additional resources for The Films of Theo Angelopoulos: A Cinema of Contemplation
The Greek community in Voyage to Cythera cannot accept Spyros, the old exile, back home. Voula and Alex ander in Landscape in the Mist are abused and betrayed by all communi ties they come in contact with in Greece and, finally, find solace in their own journey away from the communities they have known. And the film director in Ulysses ' Gaze travels through several troubled Balkan nations (communities) trying to establish a different kind of community: a rela tionship with the past of the Balkan cinematic community.
He documents these rituals as a "passage " between two worlds. He not only captures the format of the initial funeral service with all of the events leading up to it, but he devotes considerable attention to the second phase of mourning, the " rites of transition" ( 3 2 ) . Within this framework, The Hunters represents a bitterly ironic cor ruption of the traditional rites of passage from life to death as an eternal finality. The exhumation process and ceremony are particularly signifi cant for the rural Greeks as a means of both accepting the finality of death and reorienting themselves toward their own lives again.
Beyond the framing of individual shots in The Travelling Players, there is the structuring of scenes in both Byzantine art and Angelopoulos's film to create a program, which we shall consider in chapter 5 . Finally, we should consider duration and the Byzantine iconic tradi- 30 C U L T U R E , H I S T O R Y, C I N E M A tion. Viewed from the Byzantine perspective, Angelopoulos's extremely long takes, often lasting up to ten minutes, suggest the "continuous" rela tionship between Byzantine art and the observer: one could stand and gaze at an icon, a program, or a scene as long as one wished.