The 12h Beijing International Film Festival will take place between 13 – 20 August across the city and online in partnership with platform iQiyi. Its annual Film Panorama programme will pay a tribute to Greek cinema master Theodoros Angelopoulos, who is much known across Chinese cinephiles.
Beijing Special Correspondence
Theodoros Angelopoulos (1935-2012), an international known Greek treasure and a master filmmaker beloved by Chinese cinema fans, left glittering, everlasting memories in the world of cinema with his unique aesthetics of full-length shots, extraordinary scheduling of time and space, and other creative cinematography. Born and raised in the shadow of turmoil, wars, and politics, Angelopoulos devoted his lifetime to the use of film as a means of profound discernment and compassion for history and life.
The journey, the border, the exile, the destiny of human beings, the eternal return—the accents of all these themes reigned over all his works, said Angelopoulos. “Everything one is obsessed with will determine his destiny. One can only make one film in a lifetime, just like variations and fugues of the same theme.” For the film, Angelopoulos once confessed: “If I were lucky enough to choose my own death, I would like to die in the process of making the film,” —and it turned out to be a fatalistic prophecy. On January 24, 2012, while on his way to the set of his new but unfinished film The Other Sea, Angelopoulos died in a car accident, and his life reached eternity in a day about movies.
He has gone, but his films live on. His concern for the fate of family and individual, his reflection on history and politics, and his ultimate search for cinematic aesthetics, among others—when looking back at Angelopoulos’ creations, we will find that he has left important spiritual inspirations for the world today in many senses. On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of Angelopoulos’ death, the Beijing Film Panorama specially organizes a high-profile retrospective of Angelopoulos’ works, screening 14 films from his debut short film The Broadcast to his first feature film The Reconstruction to his final film The Dust of Time, covering masterpieces in his epic movie series—the “trilogy of history”, “trilogy of silence” and “Balkan trilogy”, such as The Travelling Players, Landscape in the Mist, and Eternity and a Day. This aims to provide an in-depth and methodical review of Angelopoulos’ creative career.
Athens，Return to the Acropolis (1983)
The panorama is personally authorised by Phoebe Economopoulos-Angelopoulos, Angelopoulos’ widow, and is supported by the Greek Film Centre (GFC). This is the largest retrospective of Angelopoulos’ films in the past decade in the Chinese mainland, and the majority of his works are being screened in Beijing for the first time.
With this rare film event, Beijing International Film Festival states that, on be half of all fans in China, they will take this opportunity to express their deepest respect and memory to this film master.
As the posthumous work of Angelopoulos, the second installment in his “trilogy of history”, The Dust of Time reveals the director’s powerful creative vitality in the flow of time and space and the interplay of reality and fiction. It is both an ambitious work that crosses history and borders, and a tender dream of film in the ashes of time.
After receiving the invitation from the Beijing Film Panorama, Mrs. Phoebe Economopoulos wrote in her letter to the BJIFF, “We are very pleased and honored that the BJIFF offers the opportunity to screen Theo’s works, and hope that young audiences in China will enjoy his works as much as those before them!”
For the full tribute article by BJIFF, please visit here.