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The Prophet – review

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Kahlil Gibran's prose-poem may have Hallmark sentiments, but this is a cinematic rhapsody

Gary Tarn is a British director creating collages of images and ideas, in the tradition of Chris Marker – directing, shooting, editing, and composing the music. After his Bafta-nominated Black Sun, he has returned with a visual quilt inspired by the prose-poem The Prophet, a spiritual-humanist work by Kahlil Gibran. He assembles intriguing and potent images, strikingly juxtaposed, a free-form cinematic rhapsody, which is accompanied by an adapted voice-over of the original text. This may also have absorbed something from Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life. I am an agnostic about Gibran – for me, his work verges on Hallmark-card-speak – and it took a while to acclimatise to Thandie Newton's narration, in a sonorous American accent. But Tarn is persuasive, and you can't help but respond to the boldness, intelligence and creativity of hisfilm-making.

Rating: 3/5


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