La Dolce Vita (1960)


“Don’t be like me. Salvation doesn’t lie within four walls. I’m too serious to be a dilettante and too much a dabbler to be a professional. Even the most miserable life is better than a sheltered existence in an organized society where everything is calculated and perfected. ” – Steiner

Number of Times Seen – 1 (23 Sep 2018)

Brief Synopsis – Seven days in the life of a photojournalist as he tries to do his job without getting distracted by the world of glamour around him.

My Take on it – I have never been a fan of films like this and that largely has to do with the fact that I rarely fully understand them.

Federico Fellini was apparently a master at telling allegorical tales that were shown in an existential manner and that is generally far from my own comprehension of movies.

The story is told in a very strange way and eventhough is may seem like a normal narrative film, it is far from being that.

Yes, there are some great scenes in this film that are shot beautifully and make us wish we were in those Italian locations yet the overall story leaves way too many thing open ended with lots of unanswered questions.

To much of this film is allegorical about society and glamour and can’t be understood at face value.

Of the various scenes in the film, the one on the fountain is most memorable.

I can completely understand how Fellini could get an Oscar nomination for Directing this film because of the innovative way that it was filmed, yet, this is a film that was just not one that I could really enjoy.

Bottom Line – Another existential Fellini film that I’ll never quite understand. The way that the story is told is a bit strange to me and while there are a few great scenes, overall the story itself leaves to much unanswered while trying to tell seven days in the life of a photojournalist. Too much of the film is allegorical and can’t be taken straight forward. The scene in the fountain is by far the most enjoyable and memorable.  I can understand how and why Fellini would be nominated for Best Director for the way he handles this film, yet overall, it just didn’t do it for me.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The famous scene in the Trevi Fountain was shot over a week in March, when nights were still cold. According to Federico Fellini (in an interview with Costanzo Costantini), Anita Ekberg stood in the cold water in her dress for hours without any trouble. Marcello Mastroianni, on the other hand, had to wear a wetsuit beneath his clothes, and even that wasn’t enough. Still freezing, he downed an entire bottle of vodka, so that he was completely drunk while shooting the scene. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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2 thoughts on “La Dolce Vita (1960)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Director – Oscars 1961 |

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1960 |

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