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Le Amiche [Import USA Zone 1]
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Description du produit
Description du produit
A key film of Antonioni's middle-period, Le amiche [The Girlfriends] finds the Italian master expanding his palette in the realm of traditional narrative cinema by way of his powerhouse direction of an ensemble cast, while entrenching his devotion to expressing the emotional makeup of the modern woman. Clelia (Eleonora Rossi-Drago) embarks from Rome to set up a fashion-salon in Torino. Shortly after arrival, she finds herself caught up in the (melo)dramas of a bourgeoise circle of acquaintances (including the iconic Valentina Cortese), and their attendant attempts at suicide, their class prejudices, and the romantic alliances that threaten to transform the social clique into an emotional tar-pit. Le amiche represents the epitome of Antonioni's '50s period, and although it lays the groundwork for such '60s breakthroughs as L'avventura and La notte, it proves itself no less brilliant. SPECIAL FEATURES INCLUDING: * Beautiful new transfer of the film in its recent restoration by Cineteca di Bologna, L'Immagine Ritrovata, and Martin Scorsese's Film Foundation, in its original 1.37:1 aspect ratio, and presented in a 1080p AVC encode on the Blu-ray * A new and exclusive video introduction to the film with critic and teacher Gabe Klinger * A new and exclusive video featuring Gabe Klinger discussing the arc of Antonioni's entire career * Optional English subtitles * A lengthy booklet containing newly translated critical pieces about the film, excerpts of interviews with Antonioni, and more!
Clelia, una ragazza di origini modeste e direttrice di una casa di mode a Roma, viene inviata a Torino con l'incarico di aprire una filiale. Nell'albergo dov'è scesa, c'è una ragazza di famiglia agiata, Rosetta, che sta tentando di avvelenarsi in una stanza vicina. Rosetta viene salvata e si scopre che la causa del disperato tentativo è stato un amore infelice: si è innamorata di Lorenzo, un pittore, marito di Nene, apprezzata ceramista. Il drammatico episodio offre a Clelia l'occasione di conoscere, oltre a Rosetta, Momina, donna sposata, ma separata dal marito e Nene. Rosetta, ormai ristabilita, rivede Lorenzo e gli rivela il suo amore. Nene, venuta a conoscenza della relazione tra il marito e la ragazza, decide di lasciare libero Lorenzo e partire per New York, dov'è stata invitata ad allestire una mostra personale. Ma quando Rosetta lo mette al corrente della decisione di sua moglie, Lorenzo si mostra molto contrariato perchè non tollera di essere abbandonato dalla moglie. Fa capire a Rosetta che tra loro tutto è finito e lei, disperata, va a gettarsi nel Po. Clelia si arrabbia con Momina, per i frivoli e cinici consigliche ha dato a Rosetta e la ritiene responsabile della sua fine. La scenata avviene nel salone della casa di mode e costa a Clelia il posto. Nel frattempo Lorenzo e Nene si sono riconciliati. Clelia decide di rimanere a Torino, dove l'amore di Carlo, un assistente edile, le promette un avvenire modesto e sicuro, ma quando la proprietaria della casa le offre un posto a Roma, accetta e rinuncia per sempre all'amore di Carlo. --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.
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But it is not just in the characters that "Le Amiche" points toward the future. There are many scenes of wandering, along city streets, or beaches. Casual sexuality it presented not for its sensual or aesthetic appeal, but as an empty attempt to connect. And the great chasm of miscommunication between men and women is on full view. Yet, even in 1955 the director knows that all is not black and white. Characters of the same gender don't really understand one another either. The film is posing a difficult question: is it possible to 'be yourself' and still need others? Clelia finds a difficult answer, while Nene seems to find its mirror image.
And speaking of mirrors, the famous Antonioni 'doubling' is here in germ form as well. In the very opening shot, Clelia looks into the hotel bathroom mirror while drawing her bath: she is about to find her self divided in her feelings about her soon-to-be new friends and her old home town of Torino. Later, she regards her reflection in a shop window mirror before deciding to pursue a romance with the handsome Carlo (Ettore Manni).
Possibly most interesting of all is Rosetta, who, in attempting suicide, is trying to 'disappear'. The film makes it more than clear that this character has no real sense of self: she is dependent upon the affections of a man and the perceived loyalty of her mostly vacant friendships. There is a telling scene with Lorenzo in which she feeds off his flattery. And, in a beautifully acted scene aboard a train, Clelia tries to help her understand the importance of connection to others, never realizing how unstable Rosetta truly is.
Antonioni would in his next feature, "Il Grido", begin to streamline his technique. "Le Amiche" has far more characters than he would later prefer, and they talk constantly. There are virtually none of the characteristic, nearly silent sequences that will inform his later works. Nor does landscape play as commanding a role it will assume in the 1960s. While the two main narrative threads of "Le Amiche" (Clelia and Rosetta/Lorenzo/Nene) will be reduced to one for nearly all his remaining films.
Complex, dramatic, and visually seductive, "Le Amiche" is not just a fine early work by Antonioni, it deserves a place beside his more famous achievements.
The DVD issue of "Le Amiche" is up to the best of Image Entertainment in terms of quality of the sharp and clean transfer. There are no extras to speak of, but it well worth having such a fascinating film in the new format.
The strongest scenes are those in which "The Girlfriends" interact in social situations; for example Chapter 4 (the beach outing) and particularly in Chapter 7 (Momina's party); the girlfriends being comprised of The Career Woman, The Man Eater Libertine, The Giggly Bimbo, The Reserved Artist, and the Melancholic Lost Soul. The tension escalates and culminates in two noteworthy scenes near the end of the film: (1) Clelia confronts Momina about her lack of sensitivity in dealing with fragile Rosetta Savoni (Madeleine Fischer); (1) Lorenzo (Gabriele Ferzetti) and Cesare Pedoni (Franco Fabrizi) start a fight in a restaurant over the subject of "success", provoking the film's ultimate tragedy.
Having seen Antonioni's trilogy ("L'Avventura," "La Notte" and "L'Eclisse"), I am aware of this director's penchant for blank spaces without dialogue. I liked "Le Amiche", but the tone of this picture more closely resembles the formative years of the Nouvelle Vague than it does classic, 1960's Antonioni. And it is a world away from the infamous "Zabriskie Point" (1970). "Le Amiche" opens and closes with wistful, jazzy music composed by Giovanni Fusco; music is used sparingly in this film, as one would expect from the maestro of cinematic silences.
Stephen C. Bird, Author of "Any Resemblance To A Coincidence Is Accidental"