Auteur Jerzy Skolimowski at eighty-four endows film lovers a divinely consummate movie experience; inspired by Robert Bresson’s 1966 “Au Hasard Balthazar”; “EO” (compilation of six donkeys) follows an unscripted path, through the eyes of a donkey, whose odyssey opens the minds and sensitivities of all who view it. From the onset, EO stoically accepts his/her fate; as an observer, from a boxcar, watching the freedom of stallions as they gallop across a landscape only a god could manufacture, resigned; untoward circumstances allow EO to roam at whim through valleys, forests, city streets; serendipitously, hilariously affecting the outcome of a soccer match; whimsically engaging the love of a female trainer who recognizes the decency, integrity, mightiness of a beast born to serve; man’s cruelty is not ignored, but is transcended by kindness.
Cinematographer Michal Dymek graces audiences with the most miraculously gorgeous film of the year; searing sunsets, plummeting, powerful waterfalls, mimicking a John Constable painting where humanity is subjugated by nature; joys, travesties, violence are cloaked in the mastery of Skolimowski, his wife, Ewa Piaskowska, Dymek, elevating the benign to the extraordinary; their vision is revelatory, astounding, remarkable in the filmic genre.
The transformative power of “EO” resides in the luminosity of filmmakers, capable of producing an unlikely protagonist, a donkey whose journey is a metaphor for one’s life; at one point a solitary tear, gliding down a weary, suffering cheek, portends pain as a ubiquitous attribute, having limitless boundaries, no parameters, touching all living, breathing organisms.
“EO” is a marvel that must be savored by all.