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Siskoid's avatar


In Alice in the Cities, Wim Wenders gives an unlikely pair of companions in Philip, a journalist who's just driven though the United States and failed to find a story, and Alice, a young girl abandoned to his care by a woman he just met at the airport. Together, they meander through New York, Amsterdam and the whole of Germany, until Alice can be put into the hands of a proper guardian. Hauntingly scored, this is a quiet film about human contact and urban alienation, Philip's Polaroids empty of people until a crucial moment, when Alice becomes something other than a burden to him. The young actress is very strong, eliciting his annoyance and sympathy both, an effect she also has on the audience. Movies about men saddled with daughter stand-ins are usually very purposeful - it's an action movie trope - but this road movie is purposefully pointless. The characters don't really know what they're looking for, and so fail to find it, except in a roundabout way. A few minutes in, I was afraid I might get bored. By the end, I had totally fallen under its poignant spell.
2 years 6 months ago
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