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Almanac of Fall

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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(Jul 25, 2006)
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Editorial Reviews

Set exclusively in an older woman’s crumbling apartment, ALMANAC OF FALL follows the actions of a group of conniving characters who are motivated by money and sex. The woman’s son, her nurse, and several others vie for her money as they quarrel, maneuver, and betray, creating a bitter emotional climate worthy of Strindberg. Master director Bela Tarr, in one of his few films in color, uses inventive camera angles, a constantly moving camera, and a rigid color scheme as a strategy to comment on the characters’ power struggle. Often overlooked by Tarr enthusiasts, ALMANAC OF FALL is an important work by this gifted and original filmmaker which marks a turning point between the social realism of his early career and the distinctive visual style of his later acclaimed films such as DAMNATION, SATANTANGO and WERCKMEISTER HARMONIES.

Special Features

  • Cine-Notes collectible booklet

Product Details

  • Actors: Hédi Temessy, Erika Bodnár, Miklós B. Székely, Pál Hetényi, János Derzsi
  • Directors: Béla Tarr
  • Writers: Béla Tarr
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Hungarian (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Facets
  • DVD Release Date: July 25, 2006
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000FBHCC8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #191,861 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Almanac of Fall" on IMDb

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Format: DVD
It is often thought that your family will always stand by you when no one else will. If that is true, ask yourself this, what happens when you don't want your family to stand by you?

Hungarian filmmaker Bela Tarr early in his career was making films which revolved around the family. These film comprise the first half of his career, titles such as "Family Nest", "The Outsider" and "The Prefab People". Those films were very low key, they lack the stunning visual qualities of his later works such as "Damnation" or "Satan's Tango".

"Almanac of Fall" is the bridge between these two styles. It is also the first film I have seen by him in color, not his usual black & white.

The reason I mention family before is because recently I have been taking a class on John Cassavetes in school. The more I watch Cassavetes, sometimes I'm seeing the films for a second or third time, I can't help but see a connection between these two directors. Admittedly they take different approaches with characters, camera and their view of family, but underneath it all I see two men who make films about families and want to show you everyday life without glamorizing it.

Many of you may challenge that but please, watch "Family Nest" or "The Prefab People" and tell me if those movies don't seem to be about showing working-class Hungarian families in their struggles during Communism.

"Almanac of Fall" is really a startling film. If we watch Tarr's film in their chronological order we can see the emergence of a new style. As I said this film was shoot in color, but pay attention to the color patterns.

Something about the film reminds me of a ghost story. The choice of colors, especially the blues, seems very drab, the colors cast a hue over everything.
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Format: DVD
This is another great film in the Bela Tarr cannon. It is in colour (his only one to date, at least to my knowledge), but it has one of the most unique color schemes in a film. It really works, and the film is part of Tarr's later day work (long takes, bleak surroundings). Everyone in this film is corrupt in some ways, switching alliances and sexual partners indiscriminately. They all do desperate things, and sometimes you laugh at them, other times you feel pity. The film is a bit uneven, and it isn't as great as Tarr's next three films (all of which are masterworks), but it's still excellent....
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