Bertolucci has always been a struggle for me. I love his use of colour and scene but find his sex-obsessed, strange controversial obsessions distracting. This film pairs his cinematic lense on one of my favourite film characters the desert. A philosophical road movie into the heat and the sand, where the immediate is swallowed up in the great hum of the earth.
Bertolucci's most under-rated film. A film of quiet beauty and majesty. A great adaptation of the Paul Bowles novel and exceptionally cast. Debra Winger has never been better; this is the film she should be known for. Perfect execution in Storaro's cinematography, art direction, costume and editing. Hadn't seen it in almost 20 years and just marvelled at its beauty today. Sakamoto's score perfect. A must.
The way it uses Bowles' narration is dopey--in the final scene truly idiotic and so forced--but as a whole it flows surprisingly well, despite omitting some of the most interesting scenes in the novel, such as Kit's panic attack on the train she takes alone with Tunner. Vittorio Storaro's cinematography and Campbell Scott's performance make it worthwhile. Malkovich and Winger have zero chemistry, and she's miscast.