A Talking Picture

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  • NR
  • 2003
  • 1 hr 36 min
  • 6.6  (2,068)
  • 77

A Talking Picture is a 2003 Portuguese-language film directed by Manoel de Oliveira. It stars Leonor Silveira as Rosa Maria, a historian and professor who is travelling with her young daughter Maria Joana (Filipa de Almeida) on a Mediterranean cruise. The film also features appearances by international stars like John Malkovich, Catherine Deneuve, and Stefania Sandrelli.

The film opens with Rosa and Maria Joana arriving in Lisbon, where they board the cruise ship. As they embark on their journey, they meet various other passengers and crew members, including Malkovich's character, a cultural attache who takes an interest in Rosa's work as a historian. As they travel through the Mediterranean, Rosa engages in conversations with the attache and other travelers about the history of the regions they are visiting, touching on topics like Greek mythology, Islamic culture, and the legacy of colonialism.

As the voyage continues, Rosa and Maria Joana visit various historical and cultural landmarks, including the Acropolis in Athens, the Temple of Apollo in Delphi, and the ancient city of Ephesus in Turkey. Along the way, they encounter a diverse cast of characters, from a wealthy American couple to a group of young Muslim students.

Throughout the film, Rosa reflects on the significance of history in the present day, and the impact of globalization on traditional cultures. She observes changes in the way people interact with each other, as well as the natural world, and questions whether progress is always a good thing.

The film's title refers to the idea that history is not something static, but rather a living, evolving conversation between different cultures and societies. Rosa and her fellow travelers engage in this dialogue, sharing their ideas and experiences with each other and with the audience.

As the film reaches its conclusion, Rosa and Maria Joana arrive in Marseille and bid farewell to their fellow passengers. The final scenes of the film offer a poignant reflection on the nature of memory, and the importance of preserving cultural heritage for future generations.

A Talking Picture is a thoughtful and engaging film that offers a unique perspective on history, culture, and the human experience. With its beautiful cinematography, richly drawn characters, and insightful commentary, it is a must-see for anyone interested in exploring the complex and fascinating relationship between past and present.

A Talking Picture
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 36 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (2,068)
  • Metascore