When it comes to Wings of Desire, it is a film whose spirit is much better served to be expressed through any other medium than words. Perhaps I could paint your a picture or play you an instrumental number with more ease than explaining the ineffable essence of what makes Wim Wender’s late-1980s film such a profoundly beautiful masterpiece. I’m not a religious person by any means, nor particularly spiritual, but there’s a very specific feeing emitted byWings of Desire that feels touched by a divine presence—both hauntingly meditative and wonderfully enrapturing. The romantic fantasy of a film tells the tale of immortal angels who reside over Berlin, listening in on the thoughts of humans, comforting those in distress, and longing for their own ability to taste the pleasures of the living. In an article which originally appeared in The Logic of Images in 1987, Wenders said:
I really don’t know what gave me the idea of angels. One day I wrote “angels” in my notebook, and the next day “the unemployed.” Maybe it was because I was reading Rilke at the time—nothing to do with films—and realizing as I read how much of his writing is inhabited by angels. Reading Rilke every night, perhaps I got used to the idea of angels being around.