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Time of the Gypsies (rewatch)

Posted by martinteller on January 22, 2011

Thanks to South Korea, I finally own this masterpiece on a legitimate DVD.  Granted, it’s not very good quality and there’s a few flubs in the subtitles, but at least it’s anamorphic.  I did a little soul-searching while watching it.  Have I latched on to this movie for some bogus reason, heaping more praise on it than it merits?  Did I perhaps arbitrarily choose to make it one of my all-time favorites?  It’s one of only three films that I rated 100 on Criticker… is it really so perfect?  Well, disregarding the inherent silliness of assigning scores to works of art, I’ll say yes.  Or damn close.  The one area where it might fall short is the cinematography.  It’s got some great shots (all the dream/magic sequences especially) but it’s not really an eye-popping visual delight.  Then again, neither is Scenes from a Marriage, and I gave that 100 too.  So not every element has to be perfect for it to make a perfect whole.  It’s a film that resonates deep within my soul, with wonderful characters, charming comedy, devastating tragedy, brilliant scoring (I still maintain that “Ederlezi” is the best film music ever), great performances, unforgettable moments, just the right balance of reality and fantasy, social commentary and narrative ambiguity.  And not a moment of it is dull.  It’s a cinematic world that I love to inhabit, one I find richly rewarding every time.  Someone still needs to release this properly, with extensive bonus features and preferably both versions (although a bit bloated, I still intend to watch the television version again someday).  Until then, I’ll cherish my Korean DVD.  Rating: 10


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