Dir: Theo Angelopoulos
Scrs: Theo Angelopoulos, Stratis Karras, Thanassis Valtinos
Pho: Giorgos Arvanitis
Ed: Takis Davlopoulos
Prod: Giorgos Samiotis
Cast: Toula Stathopoulou, Yannis Totsikas, Michalis Fotopoulos
Greece 1970 B&W DCP Greek Eng Subtitles 110min
The opening sequence of this independently made first feature by the Greek filmmaker Theo Angelopoulos is a prescient introduction to the internationally acclaimed films which this unique voice of world cinema would go on to make over the next 40 years. A voice-over presents the facts, figures and history of the location while, in long shot, a busload of travellers wait for their dilapidated vehicle to be dug out of a rocky rain sodden road before moving on. Could these images perhaps be a state of the nation report on the military Junta ruled Greece of 1970? For a returning inhabitant of the remote and dying northern village of Tymphaia it is indeed the end of the road, but who actually killed Costas Ghoussis - his wife or her lover? The events (based on a real life case) leading up to the crime are 'reconstructed' in a series of time shifts that make up a noirish story which confidently announced the arrival of a major filmmaking talent. Film school graduate Angelopoulos's documentary beginnings and the influence of post-war Italian neorealism are reflected in his use of mostly non- professional actors, the sequences which simply record everyday life, and the arrival of a film crew (including the director himself) to report on the crime and the village much to the annoyance of its few remaining inhabitants. It is also the villagers who are very sure who is guilty: "If your wife is a whore, kill her, or she will kill you" says one. The truth in Reconstruction, with its echoes of classical Greek myth and tragedy, is seen to be much more complex, but clearly the truth that is of the greatest interest to Angelopoulos is that about Greece itself, and "an elegy for a land rotting away", the director's description 45 years ago, it continues to be.
|4/9/2016 (Sun) *||2:00pm||Cinema, Hong Kong Film Archive|
|24/9/2016 (Sat)||3:30pm||UA Cine Moko|
* Post-screening talk with Joyce Yang
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