Cinema: Echo Chambers of Horror

Two things can go no farther than Z: the alphabet and the ideological film. Traditionally, political movies tend to be newsreels with strident sound tracks or windy polemics pretending to be conversation. Scenarist Jorge Semprun (La Guerre Est Finie) knows better. So does Director Costa-Gavras (Sleeping Car Murder), who correctly calls Z an "adventure film" against a system.

The system is the present Greek government, and the adventure is the extrapolation of an incident in Athens, circa 1963. A Spock-like physician-politician (Yves Montand) addresses an antimilitary rally. As he leaves the assembly hall,...

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