The Weeping Meadow (2004) dir. Theo Angelopoulos

7/18 @HFA


From the HFA’s website: “A painstaking reconstruction of something impermanent, the post-World War I refugee village assembled in The Weeping Meadow was built by Angelopoulos to be lost in a flood. The first in his last, incomplete trilogy on Greek history, this film takes place in 1919, after the newly formed Soviet Union has exiled Greeks from Odessa. A stately formalism overtakes Angelopoulos’ style in his penultimate anti-epic, with every other scene a major pictorial triumph of staging, camera movement and photography. The Weeping Meadow is his 1900 or Once Upon a Time in America—without heroics, without the hope of trade unionism or America, which exist here as ideals and dreams in the process of being crushed by world war. Print courtesy Museum of the Moving Image.”


Emerging out of an era of both personal and political chaos with a distinctive artistic style, Angelopoulos crafted The Weeping Meadow during the latter part of his career. Following a family of refugees fleeing from the Red Terror during the Russian Civil War, the film progresses over almost half a century, documenting the aftermath of political violence and its toll on the traditional structure of a Greek community. The Weeping Meadow’s imagery explores the inherent poetic capacity of memory, while showcasing quintessential stylistic choices of Angelopoulos’ films, such as long takes, empty shots and off-screen space. The film’s themes, touching upon the construction of national identity and the significance of borders, remain relevant in the Greece of today.

The Weeping Meadow
dir. Theo Angelopoulos
163 min.

Part of the ongoing series: Eternity and History – The Cinema of Theo Angelopoulos

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