Posted in: 2000 Eyes, by Bruce Reid, Film Reviews

2000 Eyes: Dream of Light

[Written for The Stranger]

In 1973, the Spanish filmmaker Victor Erice announced himself as a major director with one of the great debuts in cinema, Spirit of the Beehive, a stunningly assured and poetic evocation of the fantasy of childhood, as well as a beautiful salute to James Whale’s Frankenstein. It took a decade for Erice’s second film, El Sur, to arrive; and his third, Dream of Light, didn’t come along until 1992. (To add to the frustration, Dream of Light languished for eight years without achieving distribution in the U.S., despite rapturous reports from every festival it played.) What qualities of patience, methodical self-confidence, and even-tempered humility must one possess to release only three films in as many decades without growing bitter or cynical about moviemaking? Precisely the same required to make a riveting, engrossing film about a man trying to paint a quince tree in his back yard.

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