The Magic Lantern

Hosted ByEricca Long and Cole Roulain

Exploring the films we love and the things we love about them.

The Magic Lantern: Episode 097 – Antonia’s Line

I purchased Antonia’s Line (Gorris, 1995) sight unseen from a bin at my local Blockbuster Video soon after it came out. My friends and I sat down to watch it, and were rewarded with a delightful experience. This film is full of joy, even though the joy comes from small pleasures rather than a larger feel-good view of life. I had been thinking about it for a long time, and wondered if it would still hold the same joy for me now. I think it does, and as with many works that chronicle the passage of time, my viewing of it benefits from my experience and living. Gorris is able to capture time in a unique way, fully capturing the sense that sometimes it speeds up and sometimes it slows down. Gorris characterized the film as a “celebration of life”, but has not shied away from incorporating cruel details and events. Some of these key events are told to us rather than shown to us, which illustrates to me that it is often their aftermath that has the most impact. Through it all, Antonia and her extended community of interesting women and men weather the years, often thriving, each in their own optimistic and pragmatic way.

What you’ll find in this episode: whether the male characters have balanced portrayals, whether negative critical assessments of the film are fair, and how we felt about the score.

– Ericca

Links and Recommendations:
Check out Antonia’s Line on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Wonder Woman.
Cole’s further viewing pick of The World According to Garp.
Why Are People from the Netherlands Called Dutch?
An interview with makeup artist Jan Sewell.

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