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Wings of Desire

There are angels on the streets of Berlin. 

Year: 1987 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: Unknown 
Certificate: BBFC 15 Cert – Not suitable for under 15s 
Subtitles: It is expected that this film is fully subtitled. 
Directed by Wim Wenders 
Starring: Bruno Ganz, Solveig Dommartin, Otto Sander  
An image from Wings of Desire

“When the child was a child, it didn’t know it was a child” chides the angel Damiel at the beginning. Scholarly and intense, his perching atop buildings is accompanied by constant thinking. Like Wenders’ earlier Paris, Texas [that name rings a bell...], it’s a film of showstopping monologues.

Through various moral quandaries and winding, extended conversations, Damiel weighs up his nature–always looking down at the city in wonder. Humans often dwell on the idea of eternal life and what we would do with it; here, the tantalising idea is that eternal beings may desire the opposite, to be blessed with glorious life even if it requires an end. The setting of a still-divided Berlin has never been more evocative.

Max King

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Screenings of this film:

2022/2023 Spring Term (35mm)