4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Look at The Sweet Life's Hollow Center
LA DOLCE VITA presents a series of incidents in the life of Roman tabloid reporter Marcello Rubini (Marcello Mastroianni)--and although each incident is very different in content they gradually create a portrait of an intelligent but superficial man who is gradually consumed by "the sweet life" of wealth, celebrity, and self-indulgence he reports on and which he...
Published on May 2 2002 by Gary F. Taylor
3.0 out of 5 stars One Of Fellini's Masterpieces!
The English translation for "La Dolce Vita" as many know by now is "the sweet life". And, that's what Marcello Mastroianni seeks throughout this entire film. He plays a thrid-rate newspaper man who writes a gossip column. He thinks life would be so much better if he was wealthy, as does everyone else I know! He wants to be a respected reporter. This movie as with other...
Published on Aug 26 2001 by Alex Udvary
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Look at The Sweet Life's Hollow Center,
Although the film seems to be making a negative statement about self-indulgence that leads to self-loathing, Fellini also gives the viewer plenty of room to act as interpreter, and he cleverly plays one theme against its antithesis throughout the film. (The suffocation of monogamy vs. the meaninglessness of promiscuity and sincere religious belief vs. manipulative hypocrisy are but two of the most obvious juxtapositions.) But Fellini's most remarkable effect here is his ability to keep us interested in the largely unsympathetic characters LA DOLCE VITA presents: a few are naive to the point of stupidity; most are vapid; the majority (including the leads) are unspeakably shallow--and yet they still hold our interest over the course of this three hour film.
The cast is superior, with Marcello Mastroianni's personal charm particularly powerful. As usual with Fellini, there is a lot to look at on the screen: although he hasn't dropped into the wild surrealism for which he was sometimes known, there are quite a few surrealistic flourishes and visual ironies aplenty--the latter most often supplied by the hordes of photographers that scuttle after the leading characters much like cockroaches in search of crumbs. Unfortunately, the only release now available is a grainy-looking videotape presented in pan-and-scan. But don't let that discourage you: even in this format its still a very worth while, very memorable film!
3.0 out of 5 stars One Of Fellini's Masterpieces!,
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4.0 out of 5 stars [4.5]-It's true that you must appreciate film to appreciate La Dolce Vita,,
This review is from: La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition) (DVD)This being my second Fellini film has made want him even more. Knowingly enough its Fellini's breakthrough film. In here it celebrates modern Rome as seen through the eyes of a celebrity journalist, Marcello Rubini (Marcello Mastroianni), a frustrated writer earning his keep by staying out every evening on the Via Veneto where he comes into contact with the rich and famous. We are supposedly witnessing the moral decline of Western civilization, and the worship of movie stars as religious icons. The reporter has a live-in girlfriend, who wants to get married, the possessive and depressive Emma (Yvonne Furneaux). He has many dalliances; one is with a bored nymphomaniac society gal (Anouk Aimee).
In this sporadic tale Marcello moves around the city with the paparazzi, ready to catch the action, and he has the power to make and break the Celebes he covers. Marcello, a celeb himself, attends nightclubs and parties that go on until dawn that are given by intellectuals, hedonists, the decadent rich and various other parties. One such memorable scene is over a false miracle (the media has a field day as a pair of children claim to have seen the Holy Virgin); the most moving scene is the suicide of an intellectual friend (Alain Cuny), that is done with compassion for the morally upright vic; and, finally, an orgy, that became the film's reason for being.
I have a few favorite scenes that lift the film above the muck: the opening shot has a helicopter lifting a statue of Christ into the skies and leaving Rome. As far I can see, it symbolically augments the departure of God for Fellini's prophetic vision. Another memorable scene is over the Trevi Fountain (Mastroianni goes into the fountain where visiting Hollywood actress Anita Ekberg is bathing). The warmest scene had Marcello meeting with his father (Annibale Ninchi) and tempting him with the sweet life.
The film veers between high culture and trash, with a little of everything in between. Because the sex was frank, the Catholic Church condemned it as a dirty movie (which I can imagine increased its box office). The film is much more than that, it's Fellini's statement about him as an artist and how he wants to make movies as both real life and fanciful art. It's winsome because of the stylish cinematography, which fills the screen with mind-blowing bizarre visuals. It's a special film, but has become dated; it points its finger at decadence with a certain titillation but just as easily seems to be grounded with a sophisticated attitude in its need to search for a way to find the sublime. Like its playboy hero Marcello, it can't make up its mind if it wants to grow up. You might say that our hero has become a victim of something that's too good to leave, but ultimately may not really be that good for him.
5.0 out of 5 stars Deception...deception...,
This review is from: La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition) (DVD)Sans nul doute ce film est et restera un chef d'oeuvre
du cinema italien.Cependant,la maison d'edition a decide
de publier LA DOLCE VITA avec une bande sonore en anglais
et une autre en...italien. De plus,le film est soustitre en
anglais,en italien et en espagnole..oui ..oui en espagnole.
He les amis.....il y a 7 millions de personnes qui parlent
francais au Quebec....L'editeur de Star Wars aurait-il une
quelconque influence sur votre comportement pour le moins bizarre...???
5.0 out of 5 stars An Existential Masterpiece,
By A Customer
This review is from: La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition) (DVD)Although "8 1/2" is often touted as Fellini's greatest work, this other, equal masterpiece from roughly the same period grows more and more profound over time. An amazingly photographed and energetic survey of ennui and despair, "La Dolce Vita" is Fellini's rumination on the intellectual and moral death of an aspiring artist, who is equally a Fellini surrogate and a stand-in for the director's perception of modern man.
Though it began life as a sequel to "Il Bidone," "La Dolce Vita" ended up an autobiographical precursor to "8 1/2" by fictionalizing Fellini's earlier life as a journalist and newspaper caricaturist rather than his career as one of the great filmmakers of the 50s and 60s. As the celebrity journalist in crisis, Marcello is fantastic -- as graceful and intelligent and sexy a performance as the screen has ever seen -- and his romp with the unbelievably pneumatic Anita Ekberg in the Trevi fountain is one of the great iconic moments of world cinema. There's a haunted, despairing quality to Mastroianni's acting here that is so subtle and cumulative that by the end of the film his predicament of quiet despair overwhelms the viewer.
Bottom line: no thinking person's film collection should be without this movie, which is as beautiful and moving as any piece of art ever created, in any medium. Fellini and his fantastic cast are all at their peak as artists, and few films have ever approached their achievement.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fellini 's Vita,
I am only one Deaf authority on Fellini and his movies. I have a good collection of video, vhs or dvd. Many books about him and his movies.La Dolce Vita and 8 and half are my top favorites. I saw them in 35mm, 16mm, tv, vhs and dvd versions but the 35mm verisons are always the best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks, F.R. Gomez
3.0 out of 5 stars So ... ?,
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Greatest Films Ever Made,
Love and sex, life and death, friendship and family, religion and reality -- all are covered here but none are analyzed. To his credit, Fellini is able to evoke more from a gesture, a pause or a heartbreaking silence than most filmmakers can from a full 90 minutes. From the opening image of a helicopter transporting a giant statue of Jesus over a swimming pool bedecked with bathing beauties, Fellini manages to cover a multitude of feelings, desires, questions and fears simultaneously. Personally, my favorite sequences involve Mastroianni's father, whose silence says more about his regard for his son and his own life than any dialogue would, and the scene in the castle rooms connected by echoes, which sums up the frustration of things unheard, miscommunicated and left unsaid. How different would any of our lives be if we could all speak face to face; how exasperatingly perfect a metaphor for the failures of personal communication.
Although 8 1/2 is regarded as Fellini's most personal film and enduring testament, I've always voted for La Dolce Vita as his masterpiece. Understated (if a Fellini film can be), filled with majestic images that burn themselves into one's subconscious while inviting subsequent viewings, bursting with undiscussed passions and intentions, this is a document of a life ALMOST lived. I find it hard to believe anyone could walk away from this film NOT glad to be alive.
4.0 out of 5 stars La Dolce Vita, Forty Years After,
Having said made those criticisms, I would have to aver that La Dolce Vita is one of the definitive works of post-World War II European cinema. The movie has visual style to burn, the use of anamorphic composition has rarely been equalled elsewhere, and the idea of offering a panorama of Roman high life through the experiences of a reporter during a few days remains a brilliant inspiration still today. Last but not least, La Dolce Vita is really fun to watch. Even Fellini couldn't take himself seriously too long, and the best thing to do is to forget the sermonizing and dig the fabulous party.
As a final note, I heartily concur with other customers about the inferior quality of the VHS tape put out by Republic. Having seen the film numerous times in a theater, I too look forward to the day it will appear in a good DVD letterbox edition.
5.0 out of 5 stars L'Agrodolce Vita,
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La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition) by Federico Fellini (DVD - 2004)
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