Unanimous winner of all three main prizes at the 1973 Locarno International Film Festival, Zanussi's landmark film is a dazzling kaleidoscope of ideas and images. Illumination explores the life of a self-absorbed young physicist trying to understand his place in the universe. He thinks science will provide the answers, but ultimately learns far more about himself through experiencing love, betrayal, loss, and facing his own mortality. As much a philosophical essay as a narrative feature, Illumination is a cinematic mosaic combining art and science, intellect and emotion. Innovatively structured, this unflinching examination of one man's life became an iconic cultural marker for a whole generation.
the quest for absolute truth
- Illumination review by CW
This is an award winning Polish movie. Our hero is a young man who wants to find truth in life, to find meaning. He chooses physics and is an intense student. He looks for truth through physics, love, prayer, having a child, long conversations, becoming a mystic, mountain climbing, living rough, returning to his family. His doctor advises him to slow down for he has a weak heart. Later, when he is almost 30, he returns to the doctor after having pain in his chest. The doctor tells him that he must slow down, he only has about 5 more years to live. He paces and smokes constantly. He tells the doctor that he doesn't want to slow down, he wants to live with intensity. He would rather die on the run than take it easy. This isn't the most interesting movie but I think that the them of looking for truth and meaning is important and made it therefore worth watching.