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A group of rich Italians head out on a yachting trip to a deserted volcanic island in the Mediterranean. When they are about to leave the island, they find Anna, the main character up to this point, has gone missing. Sandro, Anna's boyfriend, and Claudia, Anna's friend, try without success to find her. While looking for the missing friend, Claudia and Sandro develop an attraction for each other. When they get back to land, they continue the search with no success. Sandro and Claudia proceed to become lovers, and all but forget about the missing Anna. Written by
Antonioni set out to make a film on the instability of emotions and described his film as a detective story back to front. See more »
During the sequence in which Sandro and the newspaper reporter cross a street, the shadows of the camera and the crew are clearly and prolongedly visible on the actors and on the street surface. See more »
Why should we be here talking, arguing? Believe me Anna, words are becoming less and less necessary; they create misunderstandings.
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Young woman (Lea Massari) suddenly disappears during a boating trip on an inhabited island. Shortly afterward, her boyfriend (Gabriele Ferzetti) and her best friend (Monica Vitti) became attracted to each other.
However, don't expect the mystery. This is a study of emotional isolation, moral decay, lack of the communication and emptiness of rich people in contemporary (then) society. You can easily be bored by the slow pace and the lack of dramatics of this movie unless you capture its true purpose. This is "state of mind" or experience film rather than conventional plot film. Antonioni practically discovered the new movie language in L'Avventura. By using formal instruments he is expressing emotions of the characters (loneliness, boredom, emptiness and emotional detachment) and the viewer is forced rather to feel this same emotions himself than to be involved in the story and its events. These formal instruments are: slow rhythm, real-time events, long takes, visual metaphors like inhabited island(s), fog, extreme long shots (small characters in panorama) and putting protagonists on inhabited streets or large buildings and landscapes.
Great cinematography. Forms trilogy with La Notte (1961) and L'Eclisse (1962).
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