"Thus open the gates of paradise."

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Lisbon Story

06 Apr 2002

I first saw Wim Wenders' "Lisbon Story" a couple of years ago at the Toronto Film Festival, and liked it immensely. But you never know when you see a movie in the middle of a festival. Often you're a bit zonked by the onslaught of 3-4 films a day, and sometimes you praise films which pale a bit on later viewing. And sometimes, they're even better when viewed after a bit of sleep. This one is like that.

It's the story of Phillip Winter, a movie sound man played by the affable Rüdiger Vogler, who is called to Lisbon by a film making pal. When he arrives, his pal is nowhere to be seen. And so Winter hangs around his friend's house and records the sounds of Lisbon, meets the musical group Madredeus, and observes the local culture. This is not an action film. Nothing moves very fast here, in fact, Winter is hobbled by a broken foot and a traitorous car. It's as if the film is telling us to slow down and look around instead of racing through to the credits. It's a beautiful film to watch, if you have the wherewithal to look and listen.

Related Web Sites

Lisbon Story (IMDB)
Lisbon Pages (About the city)