Voyager : Summary

Length: 117 Min. Format: 35mm Colour

Premiere: 21.03.1991 (FBW "especially valuable")

Awards:
Bavarian Film Award 1992 (Best Film)
German Film Award 1991 (Film Ribon in Silver, Production)
Silver Guild Film Award 1991


Walter Faber (Sam Shepard) is a man in his fifties. A successful engineer. The cosmopolitan American studied in Zurich and now travels around the world for the international organization, UNESCO. Back in the 1950s, this was still considered a great adventure. On his return flight from Venezuela, his plane, an ultramodern Super Constellation, has to emergency land in the Mexican Sierra Madre. This coincidence is the beginning of a chain of events that radically change Faber's life.

The plot of the movie continues weeks later at the airport in Athens. Walter Faber's existence is destroyed. While he waits for his flight to New York, he tries to sort out the flurry of events: how did it all happen? Was it a coincidence or was it destiny? Stranded in the desert, he recognizes one of the passengers as the brother of a long-lost friend: Joachim Hencke (August Zirner), whom he has last seen in Zurich, shortly before the outbreak of World War Two. Just like Hanna (Barbara Sukowa), his early love, whom he left because his profession was more important to him. Hanna was pregnant at the time and Joachim wanted to help her get an abortion. Now Faber learns that Joachim and Hanna then married.

They had a daughter, but they have since divorced. Joachim lives on a tobacco plantation in South America. Joachim's brother doesn't know what happened to Hanna: Hanna is a Jew, they assume that she was probably murdered by the Nazis. Faber has another ten days before he has to go to a conference in Paris. He decides on the spur of the moment to visit his friend. But he arrives too late: Joachim has committed suicide. Back in New York, Faber can no longer live as he used to. He separates from Ivy, his lover, who is coaxing him to marry her. In order to escape her and his habitual living circumstances, he doesn't wait to take his flight to Paris. He books a cruise on a transatlantic ship. He wants to use the days of solitude on board to re-order his life. On the ship, he meets Sabeth (Julie Delpy), a young woman who reminds him of Hanna. The girl's presence confuses him and, at the same time, he feels drawn towards her. When they arrive in Le Havre, he says goodbye to Sabeth. But he can't seem to forget her. He searches for her and finds her - in the Louvre. Again, he makes a spontaneous decision to neglect his work and accompany Sabeth

on a trip to Athens where her mother lives. The trip becomes a rendezvous of sorts between America and Europe. Faber, the technician, discovers a new world for himself - the world of emotions. In the South of France he and Sabeth become lovers. But, with every new day on the journey, Faber also approaches his fate. When he hears that Sabeth's mother is Joachim's ex-wife, his Hanna, his suspicion grows stronger. In Greece, the cradle of western civilization, the past finally catches up with him. Sabeth gets bitten by a poisonous snake and is mortally wounded. At her sickbed, Faber meets up with Hanna again - and realizes beyond the shadow of a doubt that he is Sabeth's father. The attempt of the aging man to make up for lost time in his life has led to catastrophe. Walter Faber, a passenger of life en route, is seated back in the airport waiting lounge. His flight is being called.