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Wings of Desire(Der Himmel über Berlin)

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West Germany, France · 1987
Rated PG-13 · 2h 8m
Director Wim Wenders
Starring Bruno Ganz, Otto Sander, Solveig Dommartin, Curt Bois
Genre Drama, Fantasy, Romance

Damiel and Cassiel are two angels who watch over divided Berlin, offering morsels of hope and help to those struggling. One day, Damiel falls in love with Marion, a trapeze artist, and begins to desire becoming part of the physical world. After seeking advice from actor Peter Falk, Damiel discovers taking human form may be possible.

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Variety by

Wim Wenders returns to Germany with a sublimely beautiful, deeply romantic film for our times. (Review of Original Release)


The New York Times by Elvis Mitchell

Startlingly original at first, Wings of Desir' is in the end damagingly overloaded. The excesses of language, the ceaseless camera movement, the unyielding whimsy have the ultimate effect of wearing the audience down. (Review of Original Release)


Chicago Reader by Jonathan Rosenbaum

The conceit gets a little out of hand after one of the angels falls in love with the trapeze artist and decides to become human; but prior to this, Wings of Desire is one of Wenders's most stunning achievements.


The A.V. Club by Noel Murray

Though Wings Of Desire has a classic look, its mood and style is New Wave in every sense of the term. The synthesis of deep thought, leisurely pacing, and stunning visuals is in the spirit of work by the young European filmmakers of the '60s and '70s. (Reviewed in 2003 for DVD Release)


Time by Richard Corliss

Wings of Desire works hard to be both an essay and a love story, a mural and an intimate portrait. To savor this film, the viewer must work hard too. But when the artists behind the screen and the angels in the audience meet, it's like a smoke and coffee: fantastic! (1998 May 9, p. 79)


Chicago Sun-Times by Roger Ebert

Astonishing things happen and symbolism can only work by being apparent. For me, the film is like music or a landscape: It clears a space in my mind, and in that space I can consider questions. (Review of Original Release)


The New Republic by Stanley Kauffmann

Its very existence as a film sets up expectations that wouldn't exist within a book -- another reason I'd bet that there would be more pleasure in reading the screenplay. I can't remember ever thinking that previously about a film. (1998 May 23, p. 26)

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