Eternity and a Day
In Eternity and a Day, director Theo Angelopoulos' scrumptious images call to mind a dour Peter Greenaway, while the film's nominal story is laced with existential themes evocative of mid-period Ingmar Bergman. And yet it does not suck. Bruno Ganz plays Alexandre, a terminally ill writer living out his last day near the Greece-Albania border, where he "purchases" a young Albanian boy (Achileas Skevis) from a cabal of orphan-dealers. Yes -- a movie about a moribund writer and a waif who, together, Learn About Life. Still, it does not suck. At one point, Alexandre tries to return the boy to war-torn Albania. The camera pans across a snowy landscape to show hundreds of failed, dead escapees clinging to a wire fence like burnt Munch figurines. Such unforgettable images of horror, mixed with Alexandre's bittersweet recollections of more prosaic moments, ground the film in harsh reality, rendering the sometimes gratuitous injections of Art not only tolerable, but affectingly artful.