Rent Days of '36 (1972)

3.4 of 5 from 60 ratings
1h 44min
Rent Days of '36 (aka Meres tou '36) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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When a politician is murdered in broad daylight, the suspects rounded up include Sofianos, who doggedly maintains his innocence. But when a minister visits his cell, Sofianos tricks his warders and takes the man hostage, threatening to kill him unless he is granted freedom. A political crisis brews as the prison governors' and politicians' desperate attempts to defuse the situation are paralysed by indecision.
, , , Giorgos Kyritsis, , , , Christos Kalavrouzos, , Giannis Kandilas, , , , ,
Giorgos Papalios
Theodoros Angelopoulos, Stratis Karras, Petros Markaris, Thanassis Valtinos
Meres tou '36
Artificial Eye Film Company Ltd.
All the Twos: 1972-2012, A Brief History of Film..., Top 10 Films of 1972, Top Films
Release Date:
Run Time:
104 minutes
Greek Dolby Digital 2.0
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.37:1

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Reviews (2) of Days of '36

Daze Of Angelopoulos. - Days of '36 review by NC

Spoiler Alert

Most cinephiles will have begun to realise what all the fuss is about after seeing two or three of his films. Other directors have had an eye for a breathtaking image, but who else fills the entire running-time with moving photographs of such composition? And from such angles? And hold them for such a brave length of time? Tarkovsky? Too strained, and too unnatural. Besides, ever since I found out he deliberately had a horse fall down a flight of steps in 'Andrei Rublev' I've had no time for him. If you can't make a film without torturing animals you're not much good are you? Tarr? At his best he's perhaps the one who comes closest. But he's uneven, and isn't there a touch of arrogance in a lot of his work? Duras, Akerman, and others have made mesmerising films of great beauty, but there always seems to be a limit in either what they say, or how they say it.

If the subject of limits comes up, the counter-argument may run, what about Angelopoulos? He made films specifically about Greece; and. moreover, you practically need a PHD in Greek history to understand all of what's going on. There is something in that, but, in the case of 'Days Of '36' for instance, the stupidity of politicians isn't confined to Greece, nor is the abomination of interrogation rooms. This was Angelopoulos's second feature, but those who have seen some of his later work will recognise his trademarks from the off. The camera looks down from on high as a crowd gathers to hear what someone has to say. An assassin's bullet. The crowd scatters. The camera lingers. Then one man who has thrown himself down, slowly picks himself up - and dawdles. Within the first moments, Angelopoulos has caught universal behaviour.

Of course, as in all his films, there are scenes, some of them several minutes long, which only those with a knowledge of the time and place will understand. What's with the cavalry? Did they guard prisons in Greece at that time? What the Deuce was the scene with all the British twits on the beach about?

Never mind, why be querulous when there are so many scenes here of signature Angelopoulos? The prisoners' exercise; the recapture of escapees; best of all the effects and after-effects of music on the imprisoned men.

A synopsis will tell you 'Days Of '36' is about a hostage being taken by a prisoner. In fact it's about how the military and rigidly political mind works in such a situation. I don't think it will be much of a spoiler to say they don't come out of it with credit. It may not be a unique story, but Angelopoulos was a unique story-teller, and 'Days Of '36', like all his other films, is a unique viewing experience.

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Weighty - Days of '36 review by PM

Spoiler Alert

No doubt this film is (almost) in a class of it's own and worth watching just for that. Every scene carries a kind of majestic portent which keeps you guessing and engaged. Having read some reviews I did a bit of reading up before hand on the state of politics in Greece in 1936 and that certainly helped me to understand what was going on. But in the final analysis I found the film was rather too slow, unexciting and lacking in humour to rate it any higher. I wouldn't choose to watch it a second time.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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