This 1995 sketch film, which adapts three Paul Bowles storiesMerkala Beach, Call at Corazon, and Allalwas written and directed by the German team of Frieder Schlaich and Irene von Alberti, with dialogue in English and Arabic. It calls to mind the English features Quartet (1949) and Trio (1950), which adapted stories by Somerset Maugham, in its use of the original author as host and narrator. Basically the sections are mood pieces, and how you respond to them will have a lot to do with how much you’re seduced by their exoticism, strangeness, and atmosphere. I wasn’t much. (JR)

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