Yes, yes still sitting on the beach in Penang enjoying a heatwave at the moment but I just wanted to take time out to congratulate Italy on winning yet another Oscar for Best Foreign Picture . The movie is The Great Beauty directed by Paulo Sorrentino and starring Toni Servillo.
This is what the blurb says about it:
“Beauty” can be read as an update of “La Dolce Vita,” but while it is definitely Fellini-esque, it’s also a crystallization of Sorrentino’s own distinctive style. This 43-year-old filmmaker is a major talent. Though he may not be the second coming of Fellini, his films all have a funny, refreshingly complex perspective, and his latest work is a perfect example of why he is the next big Italian thing.
“The Great Beauty” is a character study that presents contemporary Rome through the eyes of Jep Gambardella (the brilliant Toni Servillo), a simultaneously overstimulated and underwhelmed taste-making intellectual. Jep is a writer, though he doesn’t really write. His first and only novella disappeared into obscurity. He spends his time performing as a public figure, a fixture of the city. He wants to remain young and important for as long as he can (he’s 65), so he uses botox. But he also mocks anyone who makes vague, pseudo-intellectual claims about ethics, art, and staying young.
On a basic level, Jep recognizes in himself everything that’s provincial and ugly about Rome. But through bon mots and helpless smirks, he breezes through life, looking for an elusive source of inspiration. He seems to find it in Ramona (Sabrina Ferili), a whip-smart stripper, but their romance is insubstantial. “The Great Beauty” is Jep’s show. He’s clever enough to know what his problems are, but not ready to solve them yet. “
It was on at The Curzon in London when I was there last year but I didn’t have time to see it. However Amazon. co.uk have it on DVD already with english subtitles so good for all us Italian language learners as well.
Well the bar calls as the sun sets over the the Main Straits . I’m back on March 28th and normal blogging will be resumed then.
Enjoy La Grande Bellezza won’t you. See you on the 28th. That first cup of Italian coffee is going to taste so good after 5 months away.