The passionate Tarrians (Tarrophiles?) Gabrielle Claes and Jonathan Rosenbaum have written me after my note on SATANTANGO. Gabrielle points out that the film won the L’age d’or prize , an award given during the Belgian Cinemathèque’s annual Cinedécouvertes festival. In the spirit of Bunuel’s classic, the award is given to films that challenge and disturb accepted notions of cinema. The festival, held the first two weeks of every July, is wonderful as a whole, too. It was here that I saw my first films by Kitano, Kiarostami, Hou, and many other directors I’ve come to love.
Jonathan points out that his essay on Satantango, which I mentioned was published in his book Essential Cinema, is also available online from the Chicago Reader site . This piece contains a lot of ideas and information, including background on the source novel.