Time to take a trip to Germany for our offering this week. “Der Himmel Über Berlin” (The Heavens Over Berlin) is the original title for Wim Wenders’ “Wings of Desire”(1987). (More true, I think, to the movie’s overall feeling than the more romanticized, English title.)
“Wings of Desire” is gorgeously shot, first in black and white (the dreamlike, watching portion) then in color (the “doing”, rather than previously “being”, portion).
Peter Falk plays himself, and is somehow aware of Damiel’s (an Angel) presence. How? Why? Damiel falls in love with a trapeze artist and decides he must become human. He wants to feel…something Angels can’t do.
Hollywood made its own version as a romantic comedy, “City of Angels”, with Meg Ryan. While diverting and watchable, it has none of the “reverie” or poetry of the original. The one similarity being that in both movies, the look of the Angels is very “late 80’s Yohji” – which is never a bad thing.
This weekend, I’ll be standing on high buildings and comforting worried souls on the Muni, in my 1987 Yohji Yamamoto trenchcoat…just for the sheer, irresistible, goddamn glamour of it all.