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12/14/2016

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rented it from amazon

I'm not sure what options people have to view this movie. In Canada we don't have the streaming services that are available in the US. I borrowed the DVD from our public library.

It can be streamed on Netflix.

Our county library system has several copies of this, so I will probably get to it before too long. Thanks for the tip, Craig. This is another of those films I would have missed entirely if not for this series.

I'm in the middle of it and will finish today. You're right, Craig, very symmetrical.

AMDG

That was very good. It takes a while to accept the weirdness. ;-) In a way it reminded me of characters in a Greek play. I think you would have to watch it several times to see everything that is there.

AMDG

O Wisdom, O holy Word of God, you govern all creation with your strong yet tender care. Come and show your people the way to salvation.

AMDG

I was expecting to find that the name of the church was something like Holy Wisdom. But it's Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza, which puzzled me at first. Saint Ivo [what?--of? with?] Wisdom? It's *at* The Wisdom, otherwise known as the University of Rome.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sant'Ivo_alla_Sapienza

In the movie, they don't talk about wisdom, they talk about sapience.

AMDG

Yes, if I remember the movie sticks to "sapience", described as "beyond love and knowledge", or something like that. I'm a bit sleepy. What day is it?

Similarities to Greek drama might be onto something. You might be onto something, I mean, by suggesting it.

Do you think I am in the right ballpark in getting at why the film uses all those strange conventions?

Yes. Do you think we could think of their bodies as architecture. I hadn't thought of that before.

One reason why I think I might watch it again is that I want to watch the movement in the film. I realized at one point that the two men seem to be always walking down steps-frequently bracketed by walls. And then at the end I noticed the women walking upward in the park. I just want to get an overall idea of how he uses that movement.

AMDG

This really sounds interesting. I'm not likely to have a chance to watch it very soon though.

Maybe so, Janet. If architecture exists to create a space that can be filled with light, I suppose that could apply metaphorically to bodies. But I see the analogy running more strongly in the other direction: that just as bodies are spiritual realities, so too are buildings.

I hadn't noticed the up/down element at all. Now I'm thinking I should watch it again too.

What I meant about the bodies being architecture is that it seems to me that the director is using the actors' bodies in the way that architects use building materials. He uses their position and movement to tell us something.

AMDG

Oh yes, I see what you mean. I think that's right.

I notice that the director has a new film, Le fils de Joseph. I'm rather curious about it, if only to see which of the odd conventions found in La Sapienza are used again.

I'm pretty sure we talked about this film months ago on here somewhere but I couldn't remember when or in what context.

In any event, I highly recommend the 2014 German film Phoenix, about an Auschwitz survivor who comes to believe that her husband may have betrayed her to the Nazis, so she tries to find him in post-war Berlin to get the answer. It's a drama, not a suspense film, thus it's fairly subdued, but the acting is very good,the story quietly gripping, and the ending pitch-perfect.

I remembered talking about that film and seeing it on Netflix. I wanted to watch it, but I haven't been able to remember the name, so thank you.

AMDG

You're welcome. I watched it last night, finally getting it from the library after being on the waiting list for months. They originally had only one copy and there were 30-some people waiting for it, but it appears that they acquired a few more copies recently.

I've seen Phoenix too, Rob, and I thought it was quite good. Subdued, as you say. I confess I was a little disappointed with the ending, I think because I'd heard it praised too extravagantly, and -- well, I don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't that. I like how you describe it.

Right, Craig. The ending isn't a stunning jaw-dropping type thing, but it fits the tone of the movie perfectly. I had only read one review, and that was months ago, so I didn't really remember any of the details.

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