A woman murders her husband, upon his return home after a long absence, with the complicity of the lover who has relieved her loneliness. Costas Ghoussis, an emigrant recently returned to ...
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A woman murders her husband, upon his return home after a long absence, with the complicity of the lover who has relieved her loneliness. Costas Ghoussis, an emigrant recently returned to his native country, is coming back from the fields, a shovel on his shoulder. He pushes open the garden gate in front of his house and calls his wife: Eleni! She does not answer; the reason: she is hidden behind the door of the kitchen with another man, Christos, a gamekeeper, the lover that she took during her husband's absence. Just as Costas crosses the threshold he is attacked and strangled. Despite their precautions, a relative of the victim suspects them and alerts the police. The criminals confess their crime. The reconstruction is that of the examining magistrate, whose inquiries are interspersed with sequences of the crime - although the actual murder is never shown - and with a social documentary which a TV unit (including the director himself) is making about the crime and the village.Written by
"Little Short Lemon Tree", a traditional lament from Epirus, is used for the opening and ending of the film. It's the same song that one of the prisoners whistles right before the attempted escape in Days of 36 (1972), it makes its way into the wedding scene of The Travelling Players (1975) and it's also heard during a scene of The Hunters (1977) (right before the publisher reads out a document to the civil engineer), drawing a connection between the early films of Theodoros Angelopoulos. See more »
This film portrays multiple reconstructions of a domestic crime in a poverty stricken and dying part of rural post war Greece. For the director, portraying the rock strewn environment of a community in decline is a key message, giving us beautiful if somewhat depressing and repetitive images. This is a setting for the crime and subsequent investigation, which is of limited interest. This true story is not an unusual one in life or films/ literature and the multiple reconstructions, very slow pace and banal setting further rob it of dramatic tension. The reconstructions specifically lead to repetition and perhaps some confusion. Characterisation and scenes are well handled, though again tending to follow expected patterns, perhaps precisely because it is based on court transcripts. Overall, critically acclaimed and visually stunning, but you may find it seems rather longer than it actually is.
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