IMDb > Red Desert (1964)
Il deserto rosso
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Red Desert (1964) More at IMDbPro »Il deserto rosso (original title)

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Red Desert -- 3 Reasons Criterion Collection trailer

Overview

User Rating:
7.7/10   6,957 votes »
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Release Date:
8 February 1965 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
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.
Plot:
Cold, rain, and fog surround a plant in Ravenna. Factory waste pollutes local lakes; hulking anonymous ships pass or dock and raise quarantine flags... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
7 wins & 2 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(90 articles)
Interview: Mark Jackson (War Story)
 (From ioncinema. 30 July 2014, 10:00 AM, PDT)

Conversation with Kelly Reilly about Calvary
 (From eyeforfilm.co.uk. 25 July 2014, 11:40 AM, PDT)

New on Video: ‘L’eclisse’
 (From SoundOnSight. 26 June 2014, 10:56 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
An excellent film See more (34 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Directed by
Michelangelo Antonioni 
 
Writing credits
Michelangelo Antonioni  &
Tonino Guerra 

Produced by
Tonino Cervi .... producer (as Antonio Cervi)
Angelo Rizzoli .... co-producer
 
Original Music by
Giovanni Fusco 
Vittorio Gelmetti (electronic music)
 
Cinematography by
Carlo Di Palma 
 
Film Editing by
Eraldo Da Roma 
 
Art Direction by
Piero Poletto 
 
Costume Design by
Gitt Magrini 
 
Makeup Department
Giancarlo De Leonardis .... hair stylist
Giancarlo De Leonardis .... key hair stylist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Ugo Tucci .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Gianni Arduini .... first assistant director
Flavio Niccolini .... second assistant director
 
Art Department
Sergio Donà .... property master
 
Sound Department
Mario Bramonti .... boom operator
Renato Cadueri .... sound assistant
Claudio Maielli .... sound
 
Special Effects by
Franco Freda .... special effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Gianni Antinori .... second assistant camera
Claudio Cortini .... still photographer
Dario Di Palma .... camera operator
Romolo Romagnoli .... key grip
Elmiro Rubeo .... gaffer
Alberto Spagnoli .... first assistant camera
Sergio Strizzi .... still photographer
Francesco Brescini .... electrician (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Paola Carloni .... wardrober
 
Editorial Department
Stephen Bearman .... colorist
Marisa Mengoli .... assistant editor
 
Music Department
Vittorio Gelmetti .... composer: electronic music
Carlo Savina .... musical director
 
Other crew
Serena Canevari .... script supervisor
Dino Di Salvo .... production auditor
Eros Lanfranconi .... production secretary
Rodolfo Martello .... production auditor
Giuseppe Rinaldi .... voice dubbing: Richard Harris (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Il deserto rosso" - Italy (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
117 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)
Certification:
Argentina:16 | Australia:PG | Finland:K-16 | Germany:12 | Italy:VM14 | Netherlands:18 (1966) | Portugal:M/16 | Singapore:PG | UK:X (original rating) | UK:12A (theatrical re-release) (2012) | UK:15 (video rating) (1995) | USA:Not Rated

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Richard Harris agreed to star in Sam Peckinpah's Major Dundee (1965) in December 1963 whilst still in the middle of making this film. Harris walked off Michelangelo Antonioni's film as it went further behind schedule to ensure that he did not miss Major Dundee's start date of 5 February 1964. Harris said that Red Desert (1964) had to be completed without him and a double was used for his character in some of the long shots.See more »
Quotes:
Giuliana:I feel my eyes tearing up. What should I do with my eyes? What should I watch?
Corrado Zeller:You ask what you should watch. I ask how I should live. It's the same thing.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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63 out of 74 people found the following review useful.
An excellent film, 26 April 2002
Author: Zen Bones from USA

For the most part, I've never been terribly impressed by the "new wave" movements in the French and Italian cinema of the 1960s. How many times do we have to watch the upper middle class intelligentsia wallowing in their designer-alienated angst? And why don't those films ever bring up any mention of altruism? Perhaps those folks wouldn't feel so alienated if they got off their seats at the cafe, or on their yacht, and actually tried to participate in the world. Maybe they could help those who don't have the leisure to whine about their hardships in life. Or maybe they could even do something to counter the coldness and ugliness that surrounds them.

This film is different, because this time the isolation and coldness is real and tangible, and we are entrapped by it as much as the main character is. We can see the ugliness and filth sweeping over everything like a virus. And we can see how isolated one becomes when one discovers that s/he is the only one who seems to be sensitive to it. No one really sees or listens to Giuliana (including, I'm sorry to see, some of the commentators here at IMDb!). The people around her see her 'function' (wife, mother, sexy lady) but not her identity. I will admit that Monica Vitti isn't terrific in this. She gives a great 'performance', but it seems too much a performance. If she had been anything like Gena Rowlands in A WOMAN UNDER THE INFLUENCE, this film would be a masterpiece. As it stands, it's still an excellent film.

As for this film's use of colors... I heard once that if you drop a copper penny into a goldfish bowl, it will eventually drain all the color from the fish. I don't know if that's true, but that is what essentially has happened to the town that's depicted in this film (and sadly, thousands of similar places all over the globe). People have adapted. And real color has been drained out of everything. The only colors we see in the film are manmade. Thick, bright, glossy paint coats everything from walls to houses to the pipes in the factories. There are no natural colors that contain any real texture or sensuality or warmth. Even the "natural" elements look unreal. The land is riddled with greenish muck, the sea is coated with muddy oil, and the sky is choking in clouds of frightening yellow smoke. The painted colors that we see throughout the town function like pink pebbles in a dirty goldfish bowl. It is a distraction that rapes one's senses. It's like muzak in an elevator. And by the end of the film, like Giuliana, we are suffocating from it.

There's an incredible scene about two-thirds of the way through the film where we escape with Giuliana in her mind to a dream world. There, the colors radiate from the shimmering sea, and the sand and the sky. And the surrounding hills have more sensuality and texture than the people in Giuliana's real world. I'm glad that Antonioni gave us this image. This film is certainly depressing, yet it has balance. There are few places left on this planet like Giuliana's pastoral island. But the fact of that image gives us a glimmer of hope, like Winston Smith and his journal in '1984'. Even if the only beauty that exists is in our minds, that's something.

I think this is definitely Antonioni's best film. It isn't for all tastes, but then, the best films never are.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Red Desert (1964)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Critics rate 100% fresh - Emperor's new clothes? bokibongbing
Is Richard Harris Dubbed? dijon1
The Spectacular Fog Scene thecuckooclock
Interesting article interpreting 'Red Desert' mackjay2
Probably Monica Vitti's best performance peterrichard30
Italians...sigh AlecEiffel
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