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VANGELIS AND THE JOURNEY TO ITHAKA

Vangelis

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Vangelis Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka album cover
3.56 | 5 ratings | 2 reviews | 40% 5 stars

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DVD/Video, released in 2013

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Feature film

Total Time 119:00

Lyrics

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Line-up / Musicians

- Vangelis / keyboards

Releases information

Release date: November 25, 2013
Label: Gonzo Multimedia
Format: DVD

Thanks to progshine for the addition
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  • Titles Chariots Of Fire (OST), 1981
  • Hispanola 1492 - Conquest Of Paradise (OST), 1992

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VANGELIS Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka ratings distribution


3.56
(5 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(40%)
40%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(20%)
20%
Good, but non-essential (40%)
40%
Collectors/fans only (0%)
0%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

VANGELIS Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ProgShine
COLLABORATOR Errors & Omissions Team
4 stars Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka (2013) is not, in fact, a new documentary, it was recorded in 2009 by Isolde Films but released only in November 2013 by Brittish label Gonzo Multimedia.

The documentary, despite the name, doesn't cover any trip Vangelis might have made, at least not in the literal sense. It's the journey of the soul. Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka (2013) is a film about Vangelis's life but not in the traditional way of music documentaries. In fact, it would be an impossible task to do a traditional documentary about a figure so peculiar as Vangelis.

For Aphrodite's Child's fans a warning: there's not even a mention about the band in the two hours doc. Instead Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka (2013) tries to show us what the musician really is, not only his music. The two-hour movie gives more focus to his production of soundtracks, in particular Chariots Of Fire, Antartica, Blade Runner, 1492: Conquest Of Paradise and Alexander, as well as the use of his music in the PBS documentary Cosmos: A Personal Voyage.

With interviews from the directors of the mentioned movies and Sean Connery, Hugh Hudson, Jessye Norman, Oliver Stone, Akiko Ebi, Julian Rachlin and many others, the movie tries to evoke the person Vangelis really is. Difficult task.

To be honest, as every documentary that is recorded in many different places and that takes a long time to be recorded Vangelis And The Journey To Ithaka (2013) suffers from a general lack of unity from time to time, but this doesn't really make the final result bad.

The scenes where Vangelis is interviewed and when he talks about complicated issues like the musical industry, his paintings, the death of his parents and the loneliness are essential to try and understand this mysterious figure that seems to receive music directly from the cosmos. And of course, the scenes where he appears playing his 'keyboards', are the special deal in the movie. In fact, it's almost a sacrilege to call them keyboards, in fact the machine he plays, especially built for him, seems more like a spaceship. It's impressive to see him commanding so many buttons, knobs and pedals at the same time!

As I said: the focus of the movie is about his soundtracks and his own being, so unfortunatelly his studio albums or the controversy about his illegal albums Hypothesis and The Dragon are not even mentioned. In many moments the film tries to show how ready Vangelis is to associate images and sounds and how his musical mind works.

All in all, this is a great DVD and absolutely essential to Vangelis fans since there are not many films like this about him. It's also essential to the ones interested in mysterious souls!

Recommended!

(Originally posted on progshine.net)

Review by Matti
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I had mixed feelings for this documentary film about the Greek maestro whose music I've enjoyed since my teens. 119 minutes is a very long and tiresome time when the majority of the contents is various persons speaking to the camera. They include e.g. musicians from the classical scene such as Julian Rachlin, Jessye Norman, Mariss Jansons, Martha Argerich and Montserrat Caballé; movie people (directors Oliver Stone, Roman Polanski and Ridley Scott, actors Gerard Depardieu and Sean Connery together with his wife, producer David Puttnam); the director of Institute of Modern Art in Valencia; a lead scientist of NASA; a Russian mime artist who acts to the music of Vangelis; and of course also Jon Anderson is seen briefly. Vangelis himself is interviewed the most, plus seen receiving various awards and sitting on the backseat of a car (yawn).

The film avoids chronological approach and there's no voice-over to tell facts about Vangelis' life and career. Nor are there scenes (except the rather moving mime performance) that use Vangelis' album music as the artistic starting point. In my mind that would have been a very fruitful approach! The interview clips are all without music and get quite boring during two hours. Therefore the music that is heard is mostly from movie clips ("Alexander", "1492 - Conquest of Paradise", "Bitter Moon", "Blade Runner", "Chariots of Fire" and the NASA-themed "Mythodea"). To my surprise there's also a film "El Greco" from 2007 - the album of the same name is a decade older though. But I must not forget the superb scene of Vangelis playing in his studio. That man is really an orchestra! More of that kind of contents would have been great.

To me the most interesting new thing was about his painting hobby. He's a gifted painter but he refuses to sell his works that are like children to him. In Spain's Valencia - and in some other places, I suppose - there was a retrospective exhibition of his paintings. The character of Vangelis is also quite interesting, and naturally the film manages to show a lot of light into it. But in general the character of this film is a bit too dry and serious. Can't rate it higher than three stars.

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