Wings of Desire (4/16/12)

Wings of DesireMovie Eighty Six

Wings of Desire is a stunningly beautiful cinematic experience from writer/director Wim Wenders. The film is literally poetry in motion.

There are many reasons we watch movies. Sometimes we want to see explosions and action and just want to be entertained without having to really think about the film we’re watching. On the other side of the spectrum, we have films like Wings of Desire that push us to think and demand our attention and consideration. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with the mindless action movie, but to me they simply aren’t nearly as memorable.

Wings of Desire is about two immortal angels (Bruno Ganz and Otto Sander) that watch over Berlin. They cannot be seen, except by young children, and the only interaction with people is a comforting hand on a shoulder or a hug. One of the angels, Damiel (Ganz) falls in love with a beautiful acrobat (Solveig Dommartin) and makes the decision to become mortal to be with her.

While the film is primarily black and white, which is to show the dull world from the eyes of the angels, there are several color scenes and things become color after Damiel becomes mortal. As the angels listen to the thoughts and feelings of the humans they watch over, the dialogue could literally be taken as poetry.

I cannot recommend Wings of Desire enough, it is honestly one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. It knows when to be lighthearted but it also knows when to be absolutely serious. My only complaint is that it does not have a definitive conclusion and sets itself up for its sequel, Faraway, So Close and call me cynical, but I can’t imagine that film being nearly as magical as Wings of Desire.

I give it 5 Berlin walls out of 5.

Addendum: Adding this beautiful art for Wings of Desire that I just discovered minutes after finishing this post.

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