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Eden is West

by Costa-Gavras

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"Everyone has a story. The beggar who raises a bowl has a story. The woman who sleeps drunk on the subway vent has a story. The man who, like Charlie Chaplin, flees at the mere sight of a cop’s uniform has a story. As in the Iliad, the adventures of our legendless hero begin in the Aegean Sea. On the same sea and under the same sun and sky that witnessed the dawn of civilization. After many brief adventures, including a stopover in Paradise, and a brief one in Hell, his epic ends magically in Paris. A Paris that sparkles in the dreams of every wanderer’s restless sleep. My film tries to mirror these wanderings, and is the story of those – who like us or our fathers and mothers before us – crisscrossed the earth, defying the oceans and uniformed bullies, in a search of a roof over their heads. The story of Elias is not that of Ulysses. Nor is it Jean-Claude’s or mine. But I do see something of me in Elias, this stranger who is no stranger to me… I also do see something of my eyes in the look others cast over him."

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