By Augusto C., West Lafayette, IN

     People have been debating what makes something art for hundreds of years. Many (although some disagree) believe that film is as great an art form as literature or music. For those who need to be convinced, or who want to see a prime example of film as art, “Z” is here to astound.

“Z,” the first foreign film to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture, is also one of the first political movies ever made. It had a direct influence on other great movies including “JFK” (in which it is referenced), “Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion,” and many others.

The movie, based on the novel by Vassilis Vassilikos and expertly directed by Costa Gavras, is a very weakly masked fictionalization of Greece in the 1960s. The film is extremely critical of the ruling military dictatorship, and follows the rise and fall of a prominent leftist candidate for the presidency. It even goes so far as to put a disclaimer after the first scene: “Any resemblance to real events, to persons living or dead, is not accidental. It is DELIBERATE.”

The film is beautifully edited, providing quick, stark shots, as well as incredibly long scenes that are composed of just one or two sustained shots. It is easy to see how such a visually striking film took home the Academy Award for Best Film Editing. The scenes are skillfully complemented by the movie's hit soundtrack. Guitars, drums, and brass punctuate pauses, cuts, and important events.

Overall, although it can become somewhat repetitive, this film offers images and dialogue that will be ingrained in your mind forever. What's more, “Z” is the perfect amalgamation of sight and sound. If you like politics, history, or films, you owe it to yourself to track this movie down and watch it over and over again.

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This article has 1 comment.

i love this so much!


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