Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Forgotten Movies: WINGS OF DESIRE

Looking at my journal, which I keep in fits and stars, the movies I gave the highest rating to in 1988 were THE DEAD, AU REVOIR LES INFANTS and WINGS OF DESIRE.

WINGS OF DESIRE (Wim Wenders) is the one that has stayed with me over the years. Partly because Hollywood tried to make its own version of this beautiful, moody, sad film.




Berlin is populated by angels who listen to the thoughts of the people below them. Bruno Ganz, in an amazing performance, listens especially to the thoughts of a beautiful trapeze artist and makes a decision based on his love for her. Peter Falk is the only American in this German film. Black and white works wonderfully in this film.

8 comments:

Dan_Luft said...

WINGS OF DESIRE is amazing ( and I think it was called ANGELS OVER BERLIN in every language but English). The shot from the angel's POV as he floats over the wall was a big thrill for my little, Cold War brain.

I was 21 in 1988 and all three of those movies were a tonic for a kid who wanted a respit from summer blockbusters. I was a theater usher so I saw a lot of forgotten movies like Bagdad Cafe, Colors, Decline of Western Civilization Part 2, Little Vera (from the USSR), Repentance (also from the USSR but way more subversive), and Bull Durham.

I sucked up a lot of air conditioning that year. WING OF DESIRE was probably the only one I saw three times in the theater.

pattinase (abbott) said...

BAGDAD CAFE was another favorite and now the theme song is in my head for the day.

George said...

Did WINGS OF DESIRE morph into HEAVEN CAN WAIT?

Brian Busby said...

You're right, "beautiful, moody, sad"... to which I'll add achingly romantic.

The best film of the decade in my opinion.

John said...

I saw this and the sort of sequel FARAWAY, SO CLOSE when they were in the theaters. I preferred the first one to the second. Beautiful, haunting with a sly sense of humor.

There is a movie with Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan, CITY OF ANGELS, which uses the same idea of angels listening to and watching humans, but quickly turns into a sappy romantic story that pales in comparison to the original.

John Weagly said...

One of my favorites.

Margot Kinberg said...

Oh, that's one I've not seen, Patti. Thanks for telling about it. It certainly sounds like one of those 'stay with you' films.

Erik Donald France said...

I like this one a lot. Sweet.