NBC Experiment in Television: Season 3, Episode 6

Fellini: A Director's Notebook (15 Mar. 1969)

TV Episode  -   -  Documentary | Animation | Comedy
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 274 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 1 critic

Fellini discusses his views of making motion pictures and his unorthodox procedures. He seeks inspiration in various out of the way places. During this film viewers go with him to the ... See full summary »

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Title: Fellini: A Director's Notebook (15 Mar 1969)

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Ennio Antonelli ...
Himself
Caterina Boratto ...
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Marina Boratto ...
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Pasqualino De Santis ...
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Alvaro Vitali ...
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Fellini discusses his views of making motion pictures and his unorthodox procedures. He seeks inspiration in various out of the way places. During this film viewers go with him to the Colisseum at night, on a subway ride past Roman ruins, to the Appian Way, to a slaughterhouse, and on a visit to Marcello Mastroianni's house. Fellini also is seen in his own office interviewing a series of unusual characters seeking work or his help. Written by Anonymous

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15 March 1969 (USA)  »

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This documentary is featured on the 2-Disc Criterion Collection DVD for (1963). See more »

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Featured in Marcello Mastroianni: I Remember (1997) See more »

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Speak-a English for the Camera
13 July 2004 | by (Dallas, Texas) – See all my reviews

It is here that we have a Fellini documentary, about (what else?) Fellini himself. This movie was made after a failure of another film he wanted to make and on the verge of Satyricon. Fellini, in familiar nonsensical fashion, travels around Rome, visiting the odd characters that we have come to see in many of his films. At first, the similarity between the characters of such films as 8 1/2 and La Dolce Vita is striking. But this is a documentary, leading me to wonder how much of this documentary Fellini actually planned. For example, when he is trapped in his room by countless eccentric characters who want to be in Satyricon, suddenly three of the women are dressed in Roman prostitute clothing. It may be that Fellini simply asked them to do this, if they were already so desperate to be in his movie themselves. Nevertheless, there's the woman on the accordian singing about Fortune, the man who tells Fellini to behold his bird-like whistling son, and the giant who walks up wondering if he can be in the film. We also get glimpses into the dreamlike lives of Marcello Mastrioanni (where, in an ironic twist, the man who plays Fellini so well gives Fellini some advice for his own life) and Giulietta Masina, and other characters who struggle to speak-a English for the camera.This is, in a way, 8 1/2 after 8 1/2. And the movie, being only an hour long, might be called "9". The way Fellini presents himself, he is living in a dream-like city, where time has gone by yet stayed still all the while, where eccentric characters crowd his study and where he is harsh and blunt with them, but where he comes to the realization that he needs these characters more than they need him. He needs their imperfections and oddities (we get to meet the clairvoyant seen in La Dolce Vita and Juliet of the Spirits), because in the end, Fellini's just as weird as they are.

My grade: 8/10


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