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Greece 1995
Directed by
Theodoros Angelopoulos
176 minutes
Rated PG

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3 stars

Ulysses' Gaze

As is so often the case with Angelopoulos, the personal and the politico-cultural are interwoven in a dense fabric that can be 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 films from the Balkans Their pure, cinematic 'first gaze, 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.




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