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  • In my review of "Room 666", a Wim Wenders documentary where he asked to several film directors at Cannes about the future of movies, I said I was expecting for a sequel for the movie where the directors interviewed to take a look back and see how their opinions were right or different from what they thought or expected the cinema experience would be in the years to come. Barely I knew the sequel already existed though a lot different than I hoped for. Wenders is the main figure now and he's the one looking back at the opinions his fellow filmmakers Antonioni, Fassbinder, Godard, Spielberg, Herzog and Ana Carolina gave in 1982 trying to establish a panorama of what they got it right and what they overlooked at the time as for our current film days.

    26 years later, Wenders is under the direction of Gustavo Spolidoro, who directed and edited the film here in Brazil and he over-imposes images from the 1982 film with this one, shooting Wenders in a Porto Alegre hotel, a room that seems structured almost in the same way the Cannes hotel were, making the other directors as if part of the recent experience in ghost-like manners. As for the opinions, Wenders talk about the pessimistic moods they were while reflecting the future of movies then, the technologies that came in the period (VHS and home videos taking over cinema space) at the same time he praises technology and how it was possible for cinema to survive with those technologies, making bridges instead of walls - VHS, DVD, digital cameras, MTV and the cinema perfected itself with their language, quality and use.

    As usual he's a fascinating talker (I loved his tribute to Antonioni, his friend, right at the beginning) and it's very interesting to see the comparison he makes between medias, their evolution and how hopeful he is that cinema isn't a dying thing, it'll evolve with the new available sources and technologies - and I fully agree with that. That was in 2008 when streaming services weren't a thing; films on YouTube were either short films or divided in 12 segments of 10 minutes each; crowd-funding productions through social medias were crazy ideas; Netflix and Amazon productions were only in dreams and now Hollywood is running faster to catch up with them and gracefully allow them into the mix - the awards are coming to them because the level of quality is beyond the studio system. I'm pointing this out because now I'm hoping for a third discussion about the future of movies..."where can we go from now?" But this time I want Wenders or Spolidoro calling our new wave of directors and some classic monsters filmmakers to share their views on cinema.

    I firmly believe this media will go on for some time. The quality is lost, all the greatest stories were already told and remakes are a trend but somehow there's always something brand new, worth seeing and that makes us rush ourselves to a great theater and see it. Creativity hasn't died yet and neither the movies. This supreme art will stand the test of time despite half of its early humble beginnings had already vanished from view. As for this film, it's a testament of times, a pure dialogue between different eras and to analyze how prophetic filmmakers can be or how wrong they could be. Great job. 8/10
  • Warning: Spoilers
    "Back to Room 666" is a Brazilian 15-minute movie from 2008, so it will have its 10th anniversary soon. This one won several awards and the director is Gustavo Spolidoro and he is also among the writers who came up with this very fine piece of entertainment. Decades earlier, Wim Wenders made a film where he asked several filmmakers how they see the medium film and how they think it will change in the next decades. Here, Wenders gives us his own approach to the subject and he is the man in front of the camera answering the same question. At the same time we see extracts from the old documentary Wenders filmed at Cannes. I think this was really very well done. I liked the way the new film fades when we see something from the old one. I really liked the proportion between old and new scenes and I also liked how Wenders managed perfectly to refer to his interviewees fro back then, but also give us his take on the subject. I do not believe you need to have seen the old 45-minute documentary from the early 1980s to appreciate this shorter documentary here, but you will want to see it after checking out this 2008 film. And lets be honest: Wenders is just such a likable presence that it's really a joy to see him. His tribute to Antonioni early on felt very real and touching too. I highly recommend the watch. This one is probably criminally underseen because of its country of origin, but it's as good as it gets for a film that runs only for a quarter of an hour. One of the best short films from 2008 and you really don't want to miss out here.