In the City of Sylvia is one of the most acclaimed European films of recent years and marks the international breakthrough of Spanish director, Jose Luis Guerin. In the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock, Eric Rohmer and Robert Bresson, Guerín presents the deceptively simple tale of a man seeking the woman he met six years before. With only a sketch to identify her, he searches the streets and cafes of Strasbourg, hoping to encounter the object of his desire.
Set in the City
- In the City of Sylvia review by DF
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You rated this film: 4
A movie where the viewer is not fed a narrative dialogue but instead a visual dialogue. People in streets, trams, and faces. In the faces we create the dialogue. Faces reacting as in a documentary but telling a story of a dream or a quest that we know hardly anything about. In spite of the documentary background of a very pretty city peopled with more than a fair share of pretty people, there is very much a tension in the way the laid-back dreamy protagonist zig-zags through the streets following the woman whom he imagines is someone he met a few years earlier. The stunning filmography, as well as the music and street sounds combine, unobtrusively, to make the movie mesmerizing. Watching the movie had me looking (like the protagonist) to recognize perhaps some familiar face amongst the myriad reflections in tram and shop windows. An excellent, but very different, movie, and certainly not one for those who expect chirpy banter and car chases in their movies.