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beautiful meditation on the mysterious cycles of life. Set in Italy’s mountainous region of Calabria, it traces the path of one goat-herder’s soul, as it passes from human to animal to vegetable to mineral. Director Michelangelo Frammartino was inspired by Pythagoras’ belief in “four-fold transmigration” of souls, but his film is far more physical than philosophical. In gorgeous long takes he captures the daily routines of the herder, a baby goat, an imperious tree and a humble charcoal kiln. Plus there is a scene-stealing cameo from a stubborn sheepdog, who hilariously interrupts an Easter Procession. Working as both a spiritual investigation and a documentary of Calabrian life, Le Quattro Volte’s placid surface hides a complex understanding of humanity. Everything is connected in Frammartino’s sublimely mystical universe, in which he finds both humor and pathos in the hypnotic rhythms of everyday life.

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KI785 Le Quattro Volte DVD (2011/Michelangelo Frammartino) $29.95 $26.99