Watch Wings of Desire

"There are angels on the streets of Berlin."

Wings of Desire is a German film directed by Wim Wenders. It stars the American film actor Peter Falk, playing himself. The main character is played by German actor Bruno Ganz. During the film, both English and German are spoken. The plot of the movie is that angels walk among people unseen but observing and listening to their thoughts. Ganz plays an angel named Damiel. The angels walk the earth in pairs, and Damiel’s partner is named Cassiel. They have many conversations about what it must be like to be human. Damiel is more interested in the subject than his partner, but it isn’t until he falls in love with a trapeze artist named Marion (Solveig Dommartin) that he seriously considers becoming human. By tapping into her mind, the angel discovers that she is very lonely and he wants to comfort her. However, he cannot due to the fact that he is invisible to her.

The subplot involves Damiel visiting the set of the Peter Falk’s latest movie. Although humans cannot see angels, he seems to have an innate ability to detect their presence. Falk has a secret that he shares with the angel in order to convince him to turn human.

The angel eventually does give up his immortality and then must deal with human emotions and suffering. As a human, he bleeds for the first time, sees in color (the first half of the movie is filmed in sepia), and tastes food and drinks coffee. He meets Peter Falk has his human self and also arranges to run into Marion at a music concert.

The main theme of the film is what it means to be human. It is a mixture of philosophizing about the nature of humanity and an old-fashioned love story. It is a film that serious movie-goers will enjoy for its dream-like quality and unconventional story-telling techniques.

| 1987 | 2 hr 7 min | 8.0/10 | 79/100
Bruno Ganz, Solveig Dommartin, Otto Sander, Curt Bois
Criterion Collection
Wim Wenders
Wings of Desire

Also starring Solveig Dommartin

Watch Wings of Desire Trailer

Der Himmel ber Berlin (AKA Wings of Desire) (1987) Trailer|1:51
Der Himmel ber Berlin (AKA Wings of Desire) (1987) Trailer|1:51

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