Visions of Europe | Chicago Reader

Visions of Europe

Commissioning a director from each of the 25 European Union countries to make a five-minute work displaying a vision of Europe sounds like a swell idea, but the result is more problematic: I'd hate to see these films and videos scattered to the winds as filler in state TV broadcasts, yet this 138-minute marathon (some directors went over the limit) is a bit of a glut. Still, it pinpoints what I like about Finland's Aki Kaurismaki (facetious folklore) and Hungary's Bela Tarr (an endless, sorrowful tracking shot) and don't like about Peter Greenaway (a disgusted fascination with nudity) and the recently assassinated Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh (crude derision). Other contributors include Barbara Albert (Austria), Christoffer Boe (Denmark), Tony Gatlif (France), Sharunas Bartas (Lithuania), Teresa Villaverde (Portugal), and Jan Troell (Sweden). In English and subtitled European languages.

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