The Window Scrupulously Surveys the End of a Life


“We’ll see how it is after all this time,” says world-renowned concert pianist Pablo (Jorge Díez) as he uncorks the vintage bottle of champagne his estranged, ailing father Antonio (Antonio Larreta) has had chilled for this special encounter. Does memory, like that bottle, grow more precious and build character over time? Argentinean filmmaker Carlos Sorín (Historias mínimas, El Perro) gracefully reflects on late-life recollections and mortality itself in this wry, would-be narrative B-side to Terence Davies’s nostalgic cine-essay Of Time and the City, inspired by the spirit of Bergman’s Wild Strawberries. Wisely eschewing a musical score or a denser storyline to focus attention to its expansive images and scrupulous details, the film takes place over one day in the remaining life of Antonio, an octogenarian writer who only sees the world through his bedside window in the Patagonian countryside. As his staff prepares for his son’s arrival and the piano tuner fills the hacienda with splintered notes, the limited stimulus sparks Antonio’s memories, his final hours playing out like delicate, melancholic poetry. Before the feature, the Film Forum will screen George Griffin’s short, The Bather, a whimsically clever reinvention of an animated film he made in 1973.

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