The films of German director Wim Wenders are infused by his love of people, music, photography and travel.
Wim has made numerous landmark films (way more than I am listing here).
These are my favorites:
Pina is a film from the heart from one artist to another.
Pina is a available in 3-D – and the dynamic dancing thrives in this format. Wenders started working on Pina because of his friendship and love of Pina Bausch’s choreography. He did not expect her death as he was in the process of filming.
However, Wim decides to keep filming as Pina’s dancers cope with and express their loss – and this becomes movingly integrated into the film.
Pina turns a tragic event into a celebration of a life well lived, spent in pursuit of creative excellence. Highly recommended.
Starring Jessica Lange and Sam Shepard as a funny, drifting cowboy. A continuation of the screenwriting collaboration between Wenders and Shepard that started with Paris, Texas.
The colors captured in the cinematography are spellbinding and Fairuza Balk turns in a hilarious performance.
If you have not seen this film about Cuban music and musicians that thrived in Havana during the pre-Castro era and their reunion 40 years later, go see it now.
In my top five of the greatest films ever made.
Captures the soul of Berlin just before the wall came down. Perhaps Peter Falk’s greatest role outside of Columbo. Also captures an archetypal moody, musical performance by Nick Cave.
Makes a compelling case for why angels should join the ranks of the humans. Wings of Desire captures internal dialogue in a way that I have never seen before or since.
Another one of the greatest films ever made. Three main reasons:
- The desert cinematography
- The archetypal loner role that Harry Dean Stanton was made for
- The sparse, haunting slide guitar work of Ry Cooder
The first half of this film shows us the soul of America with its open spaces and wanderlust – which infuses the second half in Germany.
Stars the impossibly charming and cute Yella Rottländer as Alice who is trying to get to her grandmother’s home in Wuppertal.
Also contains a classic scene featuring a little German kid, a jukebox and the music of Canned Heat:
Wenders mainstay Rüdiger Vogler brilliantly takes the lead role as a wandering Ulysses-type character with a wry smile. Alice in the Cities was the first of a trilogy of road movies for Wenders – all of which are worth checking out of you like this one.
Filmography and additional information
For a full list of films and additional information about the constantly evolving creations of Wim Wenders: