Angelus novus

by Pasquale Misuraca

1987 Selection

ITALY 1987 1h30

Feature Film

Angelus Novus is a poetic evocation and reflection on the life and thought of Pier Paolo Pasolini up until the time of this tragic death. The title is inspired by the Ninth Themes on the Philosophy of History by Walter Ber­man (1940) which, according to Pasquale Misuraca, gives the hey to both the complex and controversial vision of Pasolini’s world : “There exists a painting by Klee which is called Angelus Novus. It represents an Angel who seems intent on moving away from the place where he is stan­ding immobile. He is wide-eyed, open mouthed and his wings are spread out. The Angel of History must have loo­ked like this. His face is turned towards the past. Whe­reas we are presented with a chain of events, he sees only one unique disaster which never ceases to pile up ruin upon ruin which are thrown at his feet. He wishes to lin­ger, awaken the dead, and gather the conquered together. But from Heaven a storm rages which catches his wings so strongly that the Angel can no longer close his wings. This storm pushes him towards the future to which he turns his back, while in front of him ruins accumulate right up to the sky. This storm is what we call Progress...