Four directors tell tales of Eros fit for a 1970s Decameron. Working-class lovers, Renzo and Luciana, marry but must hide it from her employer; plus, they need a room of their own. A ... See full summary »
Three directors each adapt a Poe short story to the screen: "Toby Dammit" features a disheveled drugged and drunk English movie star who nods acceptance in the Italian press and his ... See full summary »
The first two days of a marriage. Ivan, a punctilious clerk brings his virginal bride to Rome for a honeymoon, an audience with the Pope, and to present her to his uncle. They arrive early in the morning, and he has time for a nap. She sneaks off to find the offices of a romance magazine she reads religiously: she wants to meet "The White Sheik," the hero of a soap-opera photo strip. Star-struck, she ends up 20 miles from Rome, alone on a boat with the sheik. A distraught Ivan covers for her, claiming she's ill. That night, each wanders the streets, she tempted by suicide, he by prostitutes. The next day, at 11, is their papal audience. Can things still right themselves? Written by
This is Federico Fellini's first solo effort, his first film, Variety Lights, having been co-directed by Alberto Lattuada (although it is unmistakably in the style of Fellini's early films). The White Sheik is quite underrated - there's no reason why it should be so much less respected than the other early films, particularly La Strada and Nights of Cabiria, the two most often cited as masterpieces (and I'd agree). I actually like The White Sheik quite a bit better than I Vitelloni, Fellini's next film (Il Bidone is the only one from his early period that I have not yet seen). The White Sheik is quite humorous, perhaps Fellini's funniest (although so many of his films contain a great amount of comedy). No Fellini fan should go without seeing it, because so many of his themes and images are established in it. In fact, no one should miss Variety Lights, either, for the same reason. But The White Sheik, unlike Variety Lights, stands by itself as a great film. 9/10.
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