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Ulysses' GazeGreece 1995
Directed by Theodoros Angelopoulos
Running time 176 minutes
As is so often the case with Angelopoulos, the personal and the politico-cultural are woven in a dense fabric that here is overwhelming at times. Why Harvey Keitel was given the lead role is anyone’s guess for he brings nought but a knobbly earnestness to the role of A, a famous film director returning home to a military-ruled Greece for an unauthorized screening of his film and more importantly, in search of three lost, undeveloped reels by film pioneers, the Manakia brothers, that represent the first film from the Balkan, These the pure, cinematic 'first gaze' that he believes will restore his own corrupted artistic vision.
The film charts his emotional odyssey as he tries to reconnect to a social and cultural past that has irretrievable dissolved under the pressure of historical change. At just under 3 hours Ulysses' Gaze is the director’s personal account of 20th century Greek history and will mean much more to an audience familiar with that whilst others will probably feel more than a little tested.
Available from: Madman