Until the End of the World

  • Directed by Wim Wenders
  • Germany/France/Australia/United States, 1991, 295 mins.

In order to enable his blind wife (Jeanne Moreau) to see, Dr. Farber (Max von Sydow) invents a process that makes it possible to transmit the images recorded in the brains of sighted people directly into the visual systems of blind people. Farber’s son Sam (William Hurt) sets out on a journey around the world in order to “see” and record the various stations of his mother’s life for her. Struck by the poetry of his journey, the Frenchwoman Claire (Solveig Dommartin) falls in love and sets out in pursuit of him. She, in turn, is followed by author Eugene (Sam Neill), who is recording her adventure. Eugene notes: “In the beginning was the word. What would happen if only the image remained in the end?” Forced by his distributors to hack down his original eight-hour cut to a more commercially viable three hours, Until the End of the World was critically and financially unsuccessful upon its release and Wenders himself was thoroughly dissatisfied with the result. However, two years after its initial 1990 theatrical run, Wenders created a director’s cut of the film which–at a length of almost five hours– lives up to his intentions and to the epic nature of the story.

Genres: Drama, Sci-Fi, Adventure

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