I’m a Friend. Compañero.

The most beautiful, humane film I’ve ever seen is Wings of Desire. Set in Berlin just before the fall of communism, it follows angels, seen only by children, who wander the polyglot, cosmopolitan city providing comfort to the the poor, the suffering, the spiritually distressed, the solitary who desperately seek communion with others.

Much of the film is elegiac, but there are some elements of playfulness and whimsy. My favorite is the storyline about an actor known for playing a quirky detective in a 1970’s American television show who is in Berlin to film and movie, and that actor was himself once an angel. He’s now a human, but he can sense the presence of angels, and with some of our most elemental human qualities–empathy, kindness, the openness to welcome the stranger–he reaches out his hand.

Peter Falk, RIP:

 

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