Macao—or Beyond the Sea | Chicago Reader

Macao—or Beyond the Sea

Clemens Klopfenstein's evocative poetic fantasy proceeds with a highly illogical plot as if it were the most natural thing in the world. A Swiss philologist flying from Zurich to Stockholm suffers a plane crash, swims ashore, and finds himself in Macao, along with the plane's pilot. After he tries repeatedly and unsuccessfully to phone his wife in Switzerland, he gradually realizes that he and the pilot are dead, and they attempt to escape from their affable oriental paradise. (His wife, meanwhile, discovers that the plane crashed into the Baltic Sea.) Vividly shot by Klopfenstein himself, this haunting and pleasurable Swiss drama has such a compelling mood that you can almost taste it; the dreamy night scenes, shot through a blue filter, convey some of the ambience of tinted silent films. With Max Ruedlinger, Christine Lauterburg, Hans-Dieter Jendreyko, and Shirley Wong (1988).

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