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The Conformist (1970)
"Il conformista" (original title)

R  |   |  Drama  |  22 October 1970 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 15,826 users   Metascore: 100/100
Reviews: 96 user | 108 critic | 11 from

A weak-willed Italian man becomes a fascist flunky who goes abroad to arrange the assassination of his old teacher, now a political dissident.


(novel), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Marcello Clerici (as Jean Louis Trintignant)
Gastone Moschin ...
Enzo Tarascio ...
Professor Quadri
Fosco Giachetti ...
Il colonnello
José Quaglio ...
Pierre Clémenti ...
Yvonne Sanson ...
Madre di Giulia
Milly ...
Madre di Marcello
Giuseppe Addobbati ...
Padre di Marcello
Christian Aligny ...
Raoul (as Christian Alegny)
Carlo Gaddi ...
Hired Killer
Umberto Silvestri ...
Hired Killer
Furio Pellerani ...
Hired Killer


This story opens in 1938 in Rome, where Marcello has just taken a job working for Mussollini and is courting a beautiful young woman who will make him even more of a conformist. Marcello is going to Paris on his honeymoon and his bosses have an assignment for him there. Look up an old professor who fled Italy when the fascists came into power. At the border of Italy and France, where Marcello and his bride have to change trains, his bosses give him a gun with a silencer. In a flashback to 1917, we learn why sex and violence are linked in Marcello's mind. Written by Dale O'Connor <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Bertolucci's Masterpiece about Sex and Politics [re-release]




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Release Date:

22 October 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Conformist  »

Box Office


$750,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (first release) (international)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Finnish censorship visa # 80147 delivered on 21-10-1971. See more »


A radio tower appears in a flashback to Marcello's Rome boyhood in 1917. See more »


Anna: [to Marcello] You're only a worm. You revolt me. You're disgusting!
See more »


Referenced in Cinematographer Style (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

One of the Most Visually Hypnotic Films I've Ever Seen
16 June 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Bernardo Bertolucci's stunning early-1970s classic looks absolutely beautiful nearly forty years later. It tells the story of a fascist in 1930s Italy who is assigned to root out and assassinate anti-fascists. As the story develops, we learn that a childhood event played a large role in shaping this man's perception of himself, and that the life he is leading is largely a lie.

The story Bertolucci tells is odd and compelling, but what kept me glued to the television screen was the film's mesmerizing visual style. Bertolucci collaborated with cinematographer Vittorio Storaro, and it's not an exaggeration to say that they create some of the most beautiful images I've ever seen in a film. One might expect Bertolucci to adopt a sombre color palette for telling such a gloomy story, but that's not the case. On the contrary, he opts for lush colors, striking contrasts, and stylized lighting to create a slightly surrealistic environment that's one small step removed from reality as we know it.

A truly remarkable movie.

Grade: A+

14 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Best cinematography Alexandar
Was Marcello bisexual? pogglezig
DVD release jonas_borgen
How is this a version of La dolce vita? bad-intentions
In what language did Bertolucci intend this to screen? superpanda6
nudity/sex in this movie thesidewalkwarrior
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