EL EXTRANO CASO DEL DOCTOR FAUSTO (1969)
aka The Strange Case of Doctor Fausto
Article 4447 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Gonzalo Suarez
Featuring Gonzalo Suarez, Alberto Puig, Olga Vidali
What it is: Art film
A narrator tells the story of the strange case of Dr. Fausto.
My copy of this movie is in Spanish without English subtitles, and I really couldn’t make heads or tails out of it. Usually, when this happens, it’s because the movie mostly tells itself through conversation and dialogue, and generally the movies are light on the visuals. However, that’s not the case here. This movie is primarily visual; almost all of the dialogue takes place in the form of narration by the actor who also plays Mephistopheles; the rest of the scenes have no dialogue at all. No, the problem is that it’s more of an art film than anything else, and the visual scenes do not appear to be telling any sort of story that I could make out. Individually, some of them are compelling and interesting to look at, but their significance and their relationships to the Faust story are obscure to me. That it’s inspired by the Faust story is obvious; the cast list on IMDB has characters for Faust, Mephistopheles, Helen of Troy and Marguerite. I’m not even sure if the movie would make much sense to me if I understood the narration. As a result, I can’t really say much about this one, though I will say that it was often interesting to look at.