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Heaven (1987)

Cast: Victoria Sellers, Victoria Sellers
Director: Diane Keaton, Diane Keaton
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Studio: Image Entertainment
Genre: Documentary
Running Time: 79 min.
Languages: English
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The directorial debut of Diane Keaton, the eccentric 1987 documentary Heaven is a free-flowing examination of the images people hold of the afterlife. Rather than taking a historical or narrative approach, the film is built out of numerous segments, each of which centers around a single question: from the general "Are You Afraid to Die?" and "What is Heaven?" to more provocative queries such as "What is God Like?" and "Is There Sex in Heaven?". The bulk of the film consists of expressively lit interviews, about these questions, with a wide variety of individuals. The film searches out people of extremely different backgrounds, from elderly men and women to punkish teenagers. Religious beliefs represented range from intensely fundamentalist Christian preachers to New Age practitioners with a far more non-traditional image of heaven. These interviews are broken up by montages of stock footage, which present images of death and heaven as represented in classic (and not-so-classic) cinema and television. ~ Judd Blaise, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

A Funny, Moving, and Profound Documentary by jamkat79 November 13, 2003 - 10:04 AM PST
2 out of 2 members found this review helpful
If you like Errol Morris at all you'll like this film. Like Morris, Keaton lets the subjects do all the talking, using old film clips and music to subvert, underscore, or heighten the emotional content of the interviews so that the film's larger themes arise naturally.

Keaton works a bit too hard to make the film visually exciting; the odd lighting effects and settings for the interviews become distracting at times. But the resulting documentary is a wise, honest, irreverent, and comic look at our (mostly Christian) view of heaven, and how much our ideas on the afterlife say about us. (As for me, I'm with Mark Twain, who said heaven sounds a bit too much like church). Watch this one with friends.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 7.05)
19 Votes
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