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Red Desert (1964)
"Il deserto rosso" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  8 February 1965 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 6,876 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 62 critic

Cold, rain, and fog surround a plant in Ravenna. Factory waste pollutes local lakes; hulking anonymous ships pass or dock and raise quarantine flags. Guiliana, a housewife married to the ... See full summary »

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7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Carlo Chionetti ...
Ugo
Xenia Valderi ...
Linda
Rita Renoir ...
Emilia
Lili Rheims ...
Telescope operator's wife
Aldo Grotti ...
Max
Valerio Bartoleschi ...
Giuliana's son
Emanuela Paola Carboni ...
Girl in fable
Bruno Borghi
Beppe Conti
Julio Cotignoli
Giovanni Lolli
Hiram Mino Madonia
Giuliano Missirini ...
Radio telescope operator
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Storyline

Cold, rain, and fog surround a plant in Ravenna. Factory waste pollutes local lakes; hulking anonymous ships pass or dock and raise quarantine flags. Guiliana, a housewife married to the plant manager, Ugo, is mentally ill, hiding it from her husband as best she can. She meets Zeller, an engineer en route to Patagonia to set up a factory. He pursues her, they join friends for a dinner party of sexual play, then, while Ugo is away on business, she fears that her son has polio. When she discovers the boy is faking, she goes to Zeller, panicked that no one needs her. He takes advantage of her distress, and she is again alone and ill. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

This is the story of a woman...Her hidden thirsts and hungers...Told by the world-famous director Michelangelo Antonioni in his first color film.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

8 February 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Red Desert  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The audio commentary for the BFI DVD states that Richard Harris walked off the film after an argument with Michelangelo Antonioni who had told him to walk diagonally across a yard. Harris asked why, to which Antonioni answered, "You don't ask me why, you're an actor. You just do it." The film was behind schedule at this stage and Harris was due to start work soon on Major Dunee. This and his argument with Antonioni were probably what led him to walk off the film. See more »

Quotes

Giuliana: Giuliana: There's something terrible about reality but i don't know what it is.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Antonioni: Documents and Testimonials (1966) See more »

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User Reviews

Red Desert
21 September 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Red Desert is a beautifully shot film about that ever-modern problem of alienation in the face of progress. Michelangelo Antonioni is as interested in obscuring images as he is capturing them: he periodically drifts his action out of focus, and in one of the film's most masterful scenes, places a dense layer of fog between his principals and his camera, fading them into just barely visible silhouettes. Antonioni also demonstrates a masterful command of color: his stark yellows and reds jump out from his gloomy grey world with all the menace of a poisonous animal. As the film reaches its climax, it becomes increasingly dissonant and disorienting--in all the best ways, of course. Red Desert is a great film; it captures the common angst of modernity with an uncommon mastery of Mise-en-scène and cinematography.


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