Le Quattro Volte (The Four Times) is an extraordinary cinematic essay by writer/director Michelangelo Frammartino. The place is Calabria at the southern tip of Italy a mountainous area that was once home to Pythagoras and his followers who held fast to a belief in the transmigration of souls. Except for the occasional vehicle It doesn't look as if life there has changed all that much over the centuries. Against this primitive background Frammartino uses his camera to tell an epic story of the interconnectedness of life and the cycle of life, death and rebirth.
Over the course of the film we observe the wandering soul of an old, dying Goatherd as it migrates from human to animal (goat) to plant (tree) to mineral (charcoal) and ultimately to the heavens.
This is visual poetry with no easily discernible plot, very few words and no music. Frammartino quietly, impassively observes the inexorable march of nature without editorializing. A unique film experience.