Wings Of Desire

12 January 2010

I saw Wings Of Desire when I was at The Glasgow School of Art.

They showed it in the lecture theatre one evening. I remember coming out afterwards and going to a bar and hearing all the people talking and wondering if it was the sound of their thoughts. It left a permanent mark on me. Set in Berlin pre unification, it follows two angels going about their business. The photgraphy is powerful, shot in black and white and then switching to colour at points. It’s director of photography was a guy called Henri Alekan. He was 77 when he shot this.

Nick Cave has a musical cameo and Peter Falke plays himself shooting on location in Berlin. It’s a perfect movie. Wim Wenders directs. He also directed the movie from which Travis took there name. More about that another time. If you like movies and you haven’t seen this then see it. It’s also depicts Berlin so accurately. I have always felt famliarity walking around this fantastic city and it’s all down to this film. SEE IT!

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19 Responses to “Wings Of Desire”

  1. mita says:

    travis took their name from “Paris Texas” movie..i love that movie too(Paris,Texas)..i haven’t watch Wings of Desire..maybe if u recommended, it means the movie is great..well old movie,hard to find..

  2. fernweh says:

    I never knew “Der Himmel über Berlin” (German original title, “Heaven/Sky over Berlin”) was released as Wings of Desire in English-speaking countries.
    Anyway, I agree, it IS a perfect movie. you just have to love that film. Thought-provoking, beautifully shot…everyone should try and see it, really.
    (Never watched the sequel, though…)

  3. Debbie (deebee) says:

    I haven’t seen this film but I came to Berlin as a young 18 yr old student on an exchange visit waaaay back in 1988. I was amazed at the way of life at that time (obviously this was before the wall came down) and I’d love to see how things have changed since then. A return visit is definately on my “to do” list.

  4. Krocas says:

    It’s interesting to see how different languages describe the same movie differently in the title. The original title of this movie is “The Sky over Berlin” in German. Then, it becomes “Wings of Desire” in English. In Korea, it is known as “The Poem by the Angel of Berlin.” Maybe… people get a little bit different impression from the same movie depending on their cultural background. 🙂

  5. Ana says:

    I never saw that film (now I feel like I ought to!) though I remember watching “Far Away, So Close!” on TV a couple of years ago. It made me realize how much can be said without words, the setting and photography – as you said – were enough to take my breath away. The story is like a poem and the way each scene is shot feels like pieces perfectly fit together to form a greater metaphor. It left me with the impression that us, mortals, rarely look at life in colours. That simple thought stayed with me, maybe it’s the reason why I enjoy taking black and white photographs. Well, it’s the beauty of art, I suppose… you never know for sure where the inspiration comes from. I imagine “Wings of Desire” goes along the same lines, would you say one film better than the other?
    Btw, my sister was in Berlin for a week last November. She loved how present history is in every day life. She told me that you walk one or two blocks and there is a memorial of some kind, remembering those who risked their lives in the war or trying to get to the other side of the wall. I find it amazing, people want to remember their past and learn from it! I wish that was happening here… It’s now on my list of places I have to see before I die…
    FH SAID “Faraway so close I haven’t seen but many say it is best to be avoided…”

  6. Mili says:

    I saw that film at the cinema when it first came out and on tv just a few weeks ago, just love it! In Finnish its name was translated “Under the sky of Berlin”.
    Berlin has changed a bit since the unification, the film would look a bit different if it was filmed now without all the wasteland around the wall. Or is there some of the no-man’s land still left?

  7. Elin says:

    “When the child was a child, it didn’t know it was a child, everything was soulful, and all souls were one”

    The poem “Song of childhood” is pure magic too

    FH SAID “I noticed the lyric on The Dirty Projectors “Stillness Is The Move” went ” When the child was a child, he did not know what he was…” and thought maybe this came from this…

  8. Flor says:

    Its a fantastic movie, I got the DVD and watch it from time to time, my boss recommened it to me, and that movie left a permanent mark on me…
    I went to Berlin for the first time last year, and I took the time to visit some locations and recognized places from the movie as I walked around Berlin. What an interesting city to live in.

    F from Argentina

  9. elham says:

    you’re so active!!!

  10. ro says:

    hola!!!im a fan from sapin
    i love you fran!

  11. jocelyn says:

    im glad that i find the movie on line…cant wait to see it!!! 🙂

  12. dale says:

    fran, good to see you blogging. one of my favorite movies, right up there with amelie.

  13. Almond says:

    Thank you for remind me of this film. I have to see it again to enjoy its beautifulness. I watched – for the first time – a few year ago and it totally blew my mind. The story, the scenes, the city but mainly the photography had a big impact on me: this film along with some others have made me love (and appreciate) cinema the way I do now.
    I have seen both Wings Of Desire and Far Away, So Close, and the former it’s by far my favourite.

  14. Krocas says:

    FYI… If you are a fan of Blu-ray, Blu-ray edition of Wings of Desire was released last Nov. and the price is almost same as the DVD edition at Amazon.

  15. Elin says:

    Yes, it seems like it does:) The lyrics of “Stillness Is The Move” has several lines from this poem, which i’ve heard is the monologue of the movie?? Haven’t seen it yet, but is madly in love with the poem

    very cool

  16. Kelly says:

    I just read about this movie in Paste a couple of weeks ago (sorry, I’m no filmophile). I believe it’s just been re-released on dvd. Yours is the second glowing review I’ve read in a short time so I suppose it’s time to queue it up on Netflix!

  17. sammy says:

    Sometimes I think I must lead an ignorant life, I’ve never heard of this film. I think I must see it now, if I can find it.

  18. Hei Fran!
    Look forward to hear your new songs – I’ve followed Travis since The Man Who and hope the band will keep playing together even after your solo album?
    Best wishes for 2010! Ida

  19. Lisa says:

    I have to say it’s also one of my favourites. Do you know the film director Krzysztof Kieslowski ? If you liked Wings of Desire you might like his work too… Maybe the Three Colours Trilogy : Bleu, Blanc and Rouge or La Double Vie de Véronique.

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