Synopsis by Kristie Hassen
The Hebrew prophet Elijah (played by Lou Gilbert) comes from Lake Michigan--rather than Gilead of Biblical legend--into the city of Chicago in the appearance of an elderly tramp. He proceeds to wander about, coming into contact with various characters and their assorted problems. Among those who meet him are a sculptor, the sculptor's pregnant ex-girlfriend, a violinist/beggar and the like. Even the Chicago author Nelson Algren appears onscreen as himself, pondering the difficult choices an artist must face. After his many adventures throughout the city of Chicago, Elijah vanishes back into the lake. Though interpretations of this work vary, it is most likely a retelling of the Biblical story in modern times. Regardless of symbolism or metaphor, Goldstein successfully captured the attention of critics at the time of its release. This was the first film for screenwriters/directors Benjamin Manaster and Philip Kaufman. Kaufman would go on to direct and/or write such critically acclaimed features such as Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), The Right Stuff (1983) and The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988).
artist, bum, ex-girlfriend, lake, pregnancy, prophet