Jim Jarmusch

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7.3 Stranger Than Paradise (1984)
7.2 Down by Law (1986)
7.1 Mystery Train (1989)
6.7 Night on Earth (1991)
7.4 Dead Man (1995)
7.0 Ghost Dog (1999)
6.8 Broken Flowers (2005)
6.9 Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)
7.3 Paterson (2016)

Jim Jarmusch (USA, 1953), originally a musician of the new wave scene in New York, debuted with the mediocre Permanent Vacation (1980) but soon emerged as a major talent thanks to his second film, Stranger Than Paradise (1984). (Translation of my original Italian text by/ Tradotto da Betty)

Eva arrives from Hungary to New York and her cousin Willie is informed at the last moment that he has to take care of her for ten days. Eva stays in his humble apartment and meets the only friend of Willie, Eddie. In those ten days Willie can hardly stand her, but in the end he is upset to see her leaving. Eva moves to her aunt’s place in Cleveland. A year later Willie and Eddie manage to make some money by cheating playing poker and they decide to visit Eva in Cleveland. The aunt receives them with affection, Eva is pleasantly surprised. After a few days of resting, the two boys decide to go to Florida and convince Eva to go with them. The journey is long and hexhausting. During a pause in a motel the two friends decide to bet at the horseracing and nearly loose all of their money. Eva in the mean time is given a large amount of money from a gangster who made a mistake. Eva goes to the airport to buy a ticket to Europe, but the only flight available is to Budapest and she doesn’t feel up for it.

Willie, convinced she is on that airplane, buys a ticket to board the airplane and convince her to come down.

Instead he gets stuck on the airplane. Eddie sees the airplane leaving. Eva returns to the motel.

Stranger Than Paradise (1984) Eva arriva dall'Ungheria a New York e all'ultimo momento suo cugino Willie viene avvertito che deve prendersi cura di lei per dieci giorni. Eva si stabilisce nel suo umile appartamento e fa la conoscenza dell'unico amico di Willie, Eddie. In quei dieci giorni Willie la sopporta a mala pena, ma alla fine gli dispiace vederla partire. Eva va a stare da una zia a Cleveland. Un anno dopo Willie ed Eddie fanno un po' di soldi barando a poker e con i soldi decidono di andare a trovare Eva a Cleveland. La zia li accoglie con affetto, Eva e` piacevolmente sorpresa. Dopo qualche giorno di riposo, i due decidono di andare in Florida e convincono Eva ad andare con loro. Il viaggio e` lungo ed estenuante. Durante una sosta in un motel i due amici decidono di scommettere sui cavalli e perdono quasi tutti i soldi. In compenso Eva viene in possesso per caso di un'ingente somma che un gangster le passa per errore. Eva si reca all'aeroporto per comprare un biglietto aereo per l'Europa, ma l'unico volo disponibile e` per Budapest e lei non se la sente. Willie, convinto che lei sia salita su quell'aereo, compra un biglietto per salire a bordo e convincerla a scendere. Invece rimane intrappolato sull'aereo. Eddie vede l'aereo partire. Eva torna al motel.
(Translated from my original Italian text by Betty)

Dow by law (1986)

Black and white. Poor country of Louisiana. Lurie is in bed with a black woman. Waits, disc jockey, is in bed with another woman, blond hair, she is furious because he keeps on loosing his jobs. At night, Waits is walking alone on the dirty sidewalks. The other black woman derides Lurie, another looser. A fat friend goes to visit Lurie in order to make it up with him: he brought a young girl as a gift. Lurie is skeptical but accepts to go and see the girl at the motel nearby. Outside in the street there are only prostitutes and protectors. It’s a trap: in the room there is a child and Lurie gets arrested by the police. Tom Waits is drunk and meets Benigni, an immigrant who takes notes to learn English. A friend of Waits asks him to take care of a stolen car. Also this one is a trap: the police arrests him and finds a corpse in the boot. In jail Waits and Lurie find themselves in the same cell, both innocents and both harmless, hostiles to one another but actually very similar. When Lurie discovers that Waits is a disc jockey, finally the two open themselves and become friends. But then they argue and they have a fight. Benigni is jealed in their same cell. He can only say the sentences he wrote down. He is despised by Waits and Lurie. But when he reveals that he has murdered a man in a brawl finally the atmosphere relaxes. And it’s just Benigni to convince them to try the escape. The companions help Benigni to swim and avoid the hunting of the dogs. They walk in the swamp until they find shelter in a room that looks exactly like their cell. They take a boat but they get lost in the swamp and the boat is sunk in quicksands. Waits and Lurie argue again and take different ways, in the middle of the night, while Benigni capture and cooks a rabbit. But after a while both return to eat the rabbit. The day after they finally arrive to a road, but they do not know which way to go. They take a random direction and they arrive to a house, where is living an Italian girl. She gets close to Benigni. Actually they immediately fall in love and Benigni decides to stay. The others two set out again. Once they get to a crossroad, they decide to separate. The first and the second half are completely different. The first part is an interesting cross-section of the slums, which suddenly interrupts as soon as the two protagonists end up in jail, the second is a bad comedy, held on poor gags and trying to play with benigni’s verve. But every gag lasts too long, and it doesn’t bring anything to the topic of the film.
Down by Law (1986) Bianco e nero. Paese povero della Louisiana. Lurie a letto con donna nera. Waits, disc jockey, a letto con altra donna, bionda, furibonda con lui perche' lui continua a perdere lavori. Notte, Waits cammina da solo sui marciapiedi sporchi. La nera a sua volta deride Lurie, un altro perdente. Un amico grasso va a trovare Lurie per fare pace: gli ha portato una ragazzina come regalo. Lurie e` scettico ma accetta di andare a vedere la ragazza al motel vicino. FUori per strada ci sono soltanto prostitute e protettori. E` una trappola: in camera c'e` una bambina e Lurie viene arrestato dalla polizia. Wait ubriaco incontra Benigni, un immigrato che prende appunti per imparare l'inglese. Un amico di Waits gli chiede di prendersi cura di un'auto rubata. Anche quella e` una trappola: la polizia lo arresta e trova un cadavere nel bagagliaio. In carcere Waits e Lurie vengono messi nella stessa cella, entrambi innocenti ed entrambi impotenti, ostili l'uno all'altro ma in realta` simili. Quando Lurie scopre che Waits e` un disc jockey, finalmente i due si aprono e diventano amici. Ms poi di picchiano. Benigni viene messo nella loro stessa cella. Parla soltanto le frasi che si e` appuntato. Viene trattato con disprezzo da Waits e Lurie. Benigni rivela di aver ucciso un uomo in una rissa e finalmente rompe il ghiaccio. E` proprio lui a convincerli a tentare la fuga. I compagni aiutano Benigni a nuotare ed evitano cosi` la caccia dei cani. Camminano nella palude finche' trovano rifugio in una stanza che sembra esattamente come la loro cella. Prendono una barca ma si perdono nella palude e la barca affonda nelle sabbie mobili. Waits e Lurie litigano e si separano, nel mezzo della notte, mentre Benigni cattura e si cuoce un coniglio. Ma dopo un po' tornano entrambi a mangiare il coniglio. Il giorno dopo arrivano finalmente a una strada, ma non sanno da che parte andare. Prendono una direzione a casaccio e arrivano a un casa, dove abita una ragazza italiana che fa subito amicizia con Benign. Anzi si innamorano subito. Benigni decide di fermarsi. Gli altri due si rimettono in cammino. Arrivati a un bivio, decidono di separarsi. La prima parte e la seconda sono completamente diverse. La prima e` un interessante spaccato dei bassifondi, che pero` si interrompe bruscamente appena i due protagonisti finiscono in carcere, la seconda e` una commedia mal riuscita, che si regge su gag mosce e cerca di far leva sulla verve di Benigni. Ogni gag si protrae pero` troppo a lungo, e non aggiunge nulla al tema del film.
Mystery Train (1989), his first color film, is mainly about the depressed atmosphere of a run-down civilization. The stories do not intersect, except in the location where they end: the hotel. The real protagonists are therefore the front-desk clerk and the bellboy, who actually never move from the hotel. They observe and bless. They let the dreamers in. Memphis is a city haunted by all the tourists and citizens who walked in Memphis obsessed by the ghost of Presley. Memphis is a sort of shrine where a ritual is performed day and night, but it is one melancholy ritual. The landscape of Jarmusch's film seems to have erased modernity: the buildings and the streets are still there, but there is no sign of America's modern life, of business, of traffic, of shppping. Jarmusch removes life from the city. Unfortunately, he cannot fill it with the buildings and the crowds that used to live there in the old days, so the landscape is reduced to an empty city inhabited by ghosts. Two Japanese passengers travel on a train to Memphis, Tennessee. The girl is an Elvis fan, convinced that Elvis was a reincarnation of Buddha, the Statue of Liberty and Madonna. They argue over who truly invented rock and roll. They wander around the dilapidated urban landscape of Memphis. They take the cheapest hotel room. He takes pictures of the room while she works on her Elvis scrapbook. They make love. The following morning they pack and, while they are leaving, they hear a gunshot.
An Italian woman makes a phone call from the airport to warn her relatives that she has been stranded in Memphis with the body of her dead husband. She taxes a taxi to downtown, She enters a newstand to buy a newspaper and ends up buying a whole bunch of magazines. At the restaurant, she is ripped off by somebody who sells her Elvis' comb. Afraid of being followed, she runs into the same hotel and meets another lonely woman. They decide to share a room for the night. The American talks a lot about the boyfriend she just left, then she falls asleep. The Italian woman, instead, sees the ghost of Elvis and can't fall asleep. In the morning, the American doesn't have money to pay and the extremely naive Italian gives her even some cash. As they are leaving, they hear a gunshot.
Three young men get drunk led by a wild Englishman rob a liquor store, kill the owner and then take shelter at the same hotel. In the morning they argue and that's the source of the gunshot. The bellboy opens the door to check what went on (one of the man is wonded), but then simply walks back to the front desk.
The Japanese tourists are back on the train. They briefly meet the American woman who shared the room with the Italian. The Italian is at the airport, bording the flight to Rome. The three punks take off on a pick-up truck, chased by a police car, while the train is rolling by.
(Translation by/ Tradotto da Betty)

Mystery Train (1989), la sua prima pellicola di colore, tratta pricipalmente dell'atmosfera depressa di una civilta’ in decadenza. Le storie non si incontrano, ma hanno in comune il luogo in cui si verificano: l'hotel. I protagonisti reali sono quindi l'impiegato della reception e l’inserviente, che in realta’ non si muovono mai dall'albergo. Osservano e benedicono. Fanno entrare i sognatori . Memphis è una città frequentata da tutti i turisti e i cittadini che hanno camminato a per le sue vie ossessionati dal fantasma di Presley. Memphis è una specie di santuario dove si realizza un rituale giorno e notte, ma è un rituale malinconico. Il paesaggio della pellicola di Jarmusch sembra aver cancellato la modernita’: le costruzioni e le vie sono ancora là, ma non c’ è traccia della vita moderna americana, del commercio, del traffico, dello shopping. Jarmusch rimuove la vita dalla città. Purtroppo pero’ non può riempirla con le costruzioni e la gente che vivevano là nei tempi passati cosi’ il paesaggio è ridotto ad una città vuota abitata da fantasmi. Due passeggeri giapponesi viaggiano su un treno diretti a Memphis, Tennessee. La ragazza è una fan di Elvis, convinta che Elvis sia la reincarnazione di Buddha, della statua della libertà e di Madonna. Discutono su chi realmente abbia inventato il rock and roll. Vagano intorno al paesaggio urbano decadente di Memphis. Poi prendono la stanza dell'hotel più economica. Lui sta facendo delle fotografie alla stanza mentre lei lavora al suo album di Elvis. Fanno l'amore. Al mattino fanno i bagagli e, mentre se ne stanno andando, sentono un colpo di pistola. Una donna italiana fa una telefonata dall'aeroporto per avvertire i suoi parenti che è rimasta bloccata a Memphis con il corpo di suo marito morto. Prende un taxi per il centro, entra da un giornalaio per comprare un quotidiano e finisce con l’acquistare un blocco intero di riviste. Al ristorante, viene truffata da qualcuno che le vende il pettine di Elvis. Temendo di essere seguita, entra nello stesso hotel e incontra un'altra donna sola. Decidono di condividere una stanza per la notte. La ragazza americana parla a lungo del ragazzo che ha appena lasciato, poi si addormenta. La donna italiana, invece, vede il fantasma di Elvis e non riesce a prendere sonno. La mattina seguente, l'americana non ha soldi per pagare e la ragazza italiana, estremamente ingenua, le dà persino dei contanti. Mentre se ne stanno andando, sentono un colpo di pistola. Tre giovani si ubriacano animati da un’inglese spericolato, rapinano un negozio di liquori, uccidono il proprietario e si rifugiano nello stesso hotel. Il mattino seguente litigano e quella è l’origine del colpo di pistola. L’inserviente apre la porta per vedere cosa è successo (uno degli uomini è ferito), ma poi semplicemente torna indietro alla reception. I turisti giapponesi sono di nuovo sul treno. Brevemente incrociano la ragazza americana che ha condiviso la stanza con l'italiana. L'italiana è all'aeroporto,sul punto di salire sul volo per Roma. I tre punks salgono su un camion a rimorchio, inseguiti da un’automobile della polizia, mentre il treno sta passando vicino.

Night on Earth (1991) chronicles five brief encounters that occur in five taxis on the same night in five major metropolis of the world.

A young punkish chain-smoking gum-chewing taxi driver (Winona Rider) delivers two hippies to the airport and then meets a classy middle-aged lady who just got off her private plane and needs a ride to Beverly Hills. It turns out the lady is a casting agent and, struck by the cab driver's attitude, is ready to offer the young girl a part, except that the young girl wants to become a mechanic, not a movie star.
A black man in freezing Manhattan is desperately trying to find a cab, but no cab stops. Finally one stops, but the driver is a foreigner who doesn't know New York, and doesn't even know how to drive. So the passenger takes the wheel, and the cab driver (a former clown in East Germany) becomes the passenger. They become friends, and at the end, when he reaches his destination, the New Yorker is worried for the good German who will never find his way back.
In Paris, a black cab driver who has just dumped two drunk and offensive black passengers, picks up a blind woman. The woman has an arrogant attitude, but the driver respects the fact that this blind woman is not afraid of walking alone in the middle of the night. When he drops her off and tells her "watch out for yourself", she replies "you watch out". Seconds later, he is hit by a car while she walks quietly along the canal.
In a deserted Rome, a crazy cab driver wearing sunglasses (Benigni) picks up a priest. While the priest is having a heart attack, the cab driver keeps talking and talking and talking, mainly describing his erotic adventures with a sheep and his sister-in-law. When he finally realizes that the priest has died, the cab driver dumps the corpse on a park bench.
The fifth episode (in Helsinki) is a tribute to Kaurismaki.
(Translation by/ Tradotto da Betty)

Una notte sul pianeta (1991) presenta cinque brevi incontri che si svolgono nella stessa notte su cinque tassì in cinque fra le maggiori metropoli del mondo.

Una giovane autista (Winona Rider) che mastica chwinggums in continuazione e fuma senza sosta ha appena condotto due hippies all'aeroporto e viene a contatto con una signora d’alta classe di mezza età che e’ appena scesa dal suo aereo privato e ha bisogno di un taxi per Beverly Hills. Risulta che la signora è un agente di casting e, impressionata dall'atteggiamento dell’autista, è pronta ad offrire una parte alla giovane ragazza, salvo che lei desidera diventare un meccanico, non una stella del cinema. Un uomo di colore nel freddo gelido di Manhattan sta provando disperatamente a trovare un taxi, ma nessuno si ferma. Infine uno si arresta, ma l’autista è uno straniero che non conosce New York e non sa neppure guidare. Così il passeggero prende il volante, e l’autista del taxi (un ex clown in Germania orientale) diventa il passeggero. Diventano amici e alla fine, quando il newyorkino raggiunge la sua destinazione, è preoccupato per il buon tedesco che non ce la farà mai a tornare indietro. A Parigi, un autista di colore ha appena fatto scendere due passeggeri di colore ubriachi e offensivi, e fa salire una donna cieca. La donna ha un atteggiamento arrogante, ma l’autista rispetta il fatto che questa donna cieca non abbia paura di camminare da sola nel mezzo della notte. Quando lei scende dal taxi e lui le dice "fai attenzione", lei risponde "fai attenzione tu". Qualche secondo dopo lui urta un’altra auto mentre lei cammina tranquillamente lungo il canale. In una Roma deserta, un autista pazzo che porta gli occhiali da sole (Benigni) carica un prete. Mentre il prete sta avendo un attacco di cuore, l’autista del taxi vuole confessarsi e continua a parlare, parlare e parlare, pricipalmente descrivendo le sue avventure erotiche con sua cognata e con una pecora. Quando infine si rende conto che il prete è morto, l’autista del taxi lascia il corpo del prete su una panchina del parco. Il quinto episodio (a Helsinki) è un omaggio a Kaurismaki.
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Dead Man (1995) is a Tarkovsky-ian western. William Blake e` un ragazzo appena rimasto orfano dai genitori e lasciato dalla fidanzata che e` in viaggio su un treno diretto verso il Far West, vestito da cittadino in mezzo a rozzi pionieri. Ha trovato un lavoro alla fabbrica di un paese sperduto, Machine. La fabbrica e` un meccanismo mostruoso e gli uomini che vi lavorano sono tanto bestiali quanto quelli che vivono di fuori. Il padrone, Dickinson, lo caccia, in quanto il suo posto e` gia` stato dato a un altro contabile. Blake, che ha speso tutti i suoi risparmi nel viaggio, trova consolazione in una graziosa fioraia, che lo porta subito a casa sua. Vengono pero` sorpresi dal fidanzato della ragazza. Lui spara, ma la ragazza fa scudo a Blake, che a sua volta impugna la pistola della ragazza e lo fredda. Blake viene cosi` iniziato alla violenza brada della Frontiera. Ruba un cavallo e fugge nei boschi.
L'ucciso e` il figlio di Dickinson, il quale giura vendetta: assolda tre dei piu` famigerati killer, mette una taglia sul fuggitivo, e fa spedire telegrammi a tutti gli sceriffi della zona. I tre sono delle carogne di infimo rango e si mettono subito sulle tracce di Blake.
Blake e` ferito e viene soccorso da un indiano, Nobody, che e` stato allevato dai bianchi e parla un inglese urbano. Scacciato dalla tribu`, che lo ritiene un rinnegato, e` rimasto fedele alle tradizioni della sua gente. Quando era a Washington, studio` la poesia di William Blake, e adesso si convince che il giovane sia la reincarnazione del poeta. Di conseguenza lo prende sotto la sua protezione. I due iniziano un lungo viaggio fra la natura selvaggia, sempre tallonati dai tre loschi psicotici. Lungo il percorso incontrano segni di morte e distruzione, che affliggono il povero giovane. Blake sembra l'unico sano di mente in un mondo di pazzi. In un paesaggio senza senso si aggirano uomini senza senso. Blake impara presto che per sopravvivere deve adeguarsi alla loro vita e uccide due sceriffi.
Cole, il piu` perfido e crudele dei killer, uccide il giovane nero che gli manca di rispetto, e poi uccide anche l'altro partner, reo di chiacchierare troppo (lo arrostisce e se lo mangia). Blake perde momentaneamente Nobody e deve procedere da solo, ma poi lo ritrova. Si rimettono in marcia di nuovo insieme. Incontrano un predicatore che gestisce anche un piccolo negozio: riconosce Blake come l'uomo su cui c'e` una taglia e tenta di ucciderlo, ma Blake e` piu` veloce e preciso di lui. Un altro uomo riesce pero` a sparagli alle spalle e a ferirlo mortalmente. Nobody si rende conto che e` la fine e lo porta in barca al suo villaggio, un altro posto surreale che assomiglia a un forte e a cui si arriva attraverso un percorso di rovina e distruzione. Lo mettono in una barca-bara bardata a funerale e lo lasciano andare alla deriva. In quel momento arriva Cole, che fredda Nobody ed e` freddato da lui. Blake vede la scena ma non puo` intervenire: la barca lo ha gia` portato in alto mare.
Jarmusch offre un dettaglio molto realistico della vita dell'epoca, talvolta brutale ma sempre fedele. I protagonisti e le comparse sono uomini rotte a tutte le fatiche. Se il paesaggio umano e` estremamente degradato, quello naturale e` epico.
Western decadente e avventura picaresca. Estrema violenza e brutalita`: cannibali, omicidi, violenza carnale, etc.
Ogni scena dura pochi secondi e finisce in dissolvenza.

Ghost Dog (1999)

Ghost Dog is a "big black guy" who gets inspiration from a book on samurai philosophy and trains pigeons on the roof of his building. He always carries with him a briefcase that contains high-tech gadgets. He walks out of his apartment, steals a car using one of his electronic devices, drives to a house where an old man is watching cartoons while a young woman, Louise, reads a novel, shoots the man, borrows the novel from the woman (it's a Japanese novel) and walks out. Ghost Dog is a killer, a cold and impeccable one. The man who ordered the contract is a small-time mafia boss, Sonny, who wanted to avenge the fact that the young woman is the daughter of Vargos, the super-boss. The contact between the killer and the mafia is Louie, a nice guy who reluctantly plays tough guy and who communicates with Ghost Dog via the pigeons. They are surrounded by other gangsters who are all old and inept like them.
The problem is that the dead man was one of the "family" and now the mafia has to keep up with its rituals and kill the killer. Louie is summoned and ordered to execute his favorite killer, even if Ghost Dog has served his for years like a faithful servant. Louie saved his life once and Ghost Dog has returned the favor by making Louie his master.
Ghost Dog has only one friend, the ice cream vendor at the park who doesn't even speak english. They can't really communicate, but they like each other. A little child tries to talk to Ghost Dog but Ghost Dog is not talkative. He gives her the novel, though, and asks her to read it.
The gangsters are already chasing him. They kill the wrong man on the roof. Ghost Dog understands that they want him dead. He meets Louie who wants to warn him more than kill him, and saves his life when a killer tries to kill him too.
Ghost Dog spends all his time refining his high-tech weapons, training the pigeons and reading his samurai book. He never smiles.
When they kill all his birds, Ghost Dog packs his things and sets himself out to take revenge.
The gangsters are meeting (Vargos is watching cartoons on tv, Sonny is arguing with the landlord who demands his rent paid, the gangsters are aging). They decide to move to Vargos castle.
Ghost Dog steals a sport car (he only steals luxury cars with CD players), robs a man and his girlfriend of their clothes and drives towards the gangster's castle. The gangsters are watching cartoons. So is Vargon in the limo with Louise. Ghost Dog is ready to kill him when he steps out of the limo, but a bird sits on the cane of his gun. Ghost Dog has to drive inside the compound (thanks to one of his devices) and attack the whole mob. He kills everybody including Vargos, but spares again Louise who recognizes him. And he spares Louie one more time.
But Louie now is after him: he has to avenge the deaths of his mafia brothers. Ghost Dog leaves his briefcase with all his money and all his bullets to his friend. The child returns the novel and Ghost Dog gives her the samurai book. Louie arrives on the limo with Louise. The bells announce the final shootout in the street. Ghost Dog lets Louie kill him and finally smiles. A pigeon flies to Ghost Dog. Louise finds her novel. The child grabs a gun and shoots at Louie, but the gun is not loaded. The child starts reading the samurai book.
The cartoons are symbols of self-parody: this film's story is stereotyped the same way that cartoons are. Parody spreads to the genres that Jarmusch is copying: the gangsters are old, poor, can't pay rent.
But parody coexists with a spiritual message about life, with Jarmusch's "rap": the killer is a mythical samurai who can bridge nature (his pigeons) and technology (his weapons), ordinary humans (the ice cream vendor, the child) and special humans (the gangsters). The meaning of life is about rituals, rituals that help the individual recognize himself as part of a tribe. The killer is happy to be killed according to the rituals of his tribe (the samurai) and is happy that the killer kills him to fullfil the rituals of his tribe (the mafia).
There is also a subtle element of fiction: the film begins and ends with a Japanese novel read by Louise, and it does look like a Japanese novel, as if this could be but a girl's dream while she was reading the novel.
The film is only a little too long. The ending is a little too parodistic and self-referential.

Coffee and Cigarettes (2004) is a collection of eleven short films.

Broken Flowers (2005)

The Limits of Control (2009) is (in)famous for its elliptical dialogue and slow pace, but redeemed by a densely surreal atmosphere.

Only Lovers Left Alive (2013) is a vampire film, but there is no horror throughout the story. It is mostly a surrealistic comedy with psychedelic overtones.

The film introduces the two protagonists, who live in different continents. Adam is a reclusive musician, whose music is quite popular. He interacts with the outside world via his trusted agent Ian, the only one who knows Adam's whereabouts and Adam's identity. Ian is also charged with finding vintage guitars and odd electronics for Adam's music hobbies. Ian is puzzled that Adam never allows him to use the bathroom. Eve, on the other hand, lives in Morocco, just like their good friend Kit, whose real name is Christopher Marlowe, the British writer who died in 1593. Christopher provides Eve with good blood. Adam and Eve now live in an age in which blood could be contaminated (a reference to the AIDS epidemics?) Adam, instead, dresses like a doctor, walks into a hospital and buys blood from a doctor. Kit knows that Eve is in love with Adam and doesn't understand why the two live apart (we are never told). He jokes that Adam is a suicidal romantic (apparently the bad influence of the poet Byron). One day Adam asks Ian to get him a wooden bullet (only wood can kill a vampire). Adam's studio is a collection of vintage electronics. When Eve calls him on the smartphone, Adam watches her on an old TV set. Eve decides to fly to the USA. They are happy to be reunited. Eve can guess the age of an object simply by touching it and confirms that one of Adam's new guitars is a 1905 rarity. She notices that Adam grows poisonous mushrooms in the garden and then finds his gun with the wooden bullet. When they argue about life and death, she reminds him that this is their third wedding. Both dream of Ava, Eve's dumb exuberant sister, who in fact shows up hours later in Adam's living room. Adam is still pissed about something she did the last time they met, 87 years earlier. Ava is in fact a troublemaker and doesn't waste time to wreak havoc. She insists on going to a club to listen to music and they take Ian as their guide. Ava flirts with Ian, invites him over and then... drinks him. Furious that she has killed his trusted agent, and that she damaged his 1905 guitar, Adam kicks Ava out and then disposes of the corpse with Eve. They decide to fly to Morocco, but when they arrive Kit is nowhere to be found and Eve has no other source of blood. They eventually head to Kit's house where they find him dying: he drank contaminated blood. He advises them to avoid the blood of local hospitals. Desperate, the two roam the streets of the Moroccan town. He is lured into a club by an angelic female singer. Later, they see her kissing a handsome young man. Adam and Even are touched by the scene. They walk towards the lovers and... they drink them. The last image is their mouths open as they strike the two young people.

Paterson (2016) is a poem to mediocrity and monotony, and a very hermetic parable of pointless living, of non-being. The bus is as much the protagonist as the main character: the urban landscape is viewed as a reflection in the windshield of the bus and the bus is viewed as a reflection in a shop's window. It is a simple, minimalist meditation, but it hides underneath a profound metaphysical truth, almost an essay on the human condition. On the surface the story sounds like an old-fashioned marital idyll, except that we can sense the tension that will arise as his truly gifted wife finds her calling and as Paterson the man slowly sinks into the post-industrial decay of Paterson the town. His stoic acceptance of the destruction of his poems by a dog, who was supposed to be his best friend, can be an allegory for the destruction of his middle-class life by the new technologies that are supposed to improve his life but that he unconsciously refuses to accept. We feel that Paterson is an extremely lonely man, but also that he doesn't know it yet. (I don't know whether it's intentional or not, but the poems used in this movie sound to me positively inept).

The film takes place in a modest blue-collar multi-racial town, Paterson. Before starting his shift, a bus driver also named Paterson writes a note about the matches that he and his wife keep at hand. It sounds like the thoughts of a retarded man but his wife thinks that it is high poetry. His lunch box contains a picture of Dante and one of his wife. At night he walks the dog around the neighborhood and stops by a bar where he knows everybody. While driving, he listens amused at the conversations of his passengers. His wife is worried that his poems are written in sole copy in his secret notebook and she wants him to make photocopies. She, on the other hand, dreams of becoming a country singer and decides to buy an expensive guitar. He calmly follows his routine day after day, with very little variation. For example, one night he finds a young black man practicing his rap lyrics in the laundramat. One day he overhears two passengers talking about anarchism. Whenever he can, he keeps writing his inept poems. His wife, instead, spends the day decorating the house in a truly artistic way and makes her own artistic clothes. Paterson has a funny Indian colleague who always complains about an endless streak of bad luck. One day he spots a teenage girl who is writing poetry in her secret notebook and she shares one with him, a poem about waterfalls that look like a woman's hair. His wife finds out that Petrarca wrote poems to a woman named Laura, just like her. He tells his wife about the little girl's poem that impressed him. At the bar the barman talks about comedian Lou Costello, the most famous person from Paterson, and he sees yet another scene by the two former lovers who keep arguing (and have known each other since childhood). His wife is excited about selling her cupcakes at the farmer's market and about getting the new guitar. Meanwhile, he doesn't even have a cell phone. When his bus breaks down, he has to borrow the phone of a child to call for assistance. At the bar the rejected boyfriend is getting desperate and even pulls out a gun. Paterson is quick to jump and disarm him but the gun was just a toy. The weekend comes and Paterson can rest, but it's the big day for his wife: she is going to sell her cupcakes at the farmer's market. It is a big success: she makes a lot of money. They go out to celebrate and when they get back home they find that the dog has chewed up Paterson's notebook. He waited too long to make photocopies of his poems and now they are all lost. He reacts calmly. His wife seems more distraught than him. He walks to the local waterfall and meets a Japanese tourist who asks him about William Carlos Williams, who lived in Paterson and wrote the poem "Paterson". The Japanese tourist writes poetry in his notebooks. Before leaving, the mysterious stranger gifts Paterson a blank notebook. And Paterson starts writing poetry again.
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