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until the end of the world (3/4)

The communication devices in Wenders’ UTEOTW are proto-tech inventions which deserve their very own movie. In a way, it is their movie. It’s impossible to stop gouging at his accurate vision of things to come - emphasis on things - but what makes it riveting is not the preciseness alone, but more so, the way the characters relate to those things, these devices. While the closing episode of the 287-minute saga directly discusses this relation, the primary episodes of the film lavishly carve its blueprint. It’s inimitable intimacy. Someone eats a clementine next to a screen. Someone caresses the keyboard. A champagne bottle rattles next to a socket. Wood, metal, fabric, glitter, pixels - the mesh of earth, digital and bodily at once.

The funny thing is, though, that what I had envisioned as a science-fiction film once, and written in the mid-’80s to take place around the turn of the millennium, is now just as much removed from that time as it was then, only that it is now in the past. I think that must be a rather unique experience for a filmmaker: to see his film turn from science fiction into a period movie.