The Cinematheque to Celebrate the Films of Federico Fellini Through November

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Vancouver, BC | The Cinematheque celebrates the centennial of one of cinema’s boldest and most beloved maestros with an extensive retrospective, featuring many new restorations.

Federico Fellini (1920–1993) was born in provincial Rimini on Italy’s Adriatic coast, and grew up under Italian fascism. He worked as a screenwriter and assistant director for Roberto Rossellini during the emergence of Italy’s influential neorealism movement in the 1940s. Fellini began directing his own own features, rooted in neorealist aesthetics, in the early 1950s. By the mid 1960s, Fellini had attained worldwide fame – becoming a household name even among casual moviegoers and non-cinephiles, and spawning an adjective, Felliniesque?—?for an extraordinary series of free-wheeling, flamboyant, dazzlingly creative films rooted in memory, dream, desire, and fantasy. In the English-speaking world, few filmmakers were more synonymous with the international “art” cinema.

This retrospective continues in December.


La Dolce Vita
Italy/France 1960
Federico Fellini

November 1 (Sunday) 6:30 pm
November 2 (Monday) 6:30 pm
November 3 (Tuesday) 6:30 pm
November 11 (Wednesday) 2:00 pm
November 22 (Sunday) 3:00 pm

“Why did you make such a picture?” Fellini’s mother asked her son of La Dolce Vita, the succès de scandale, denounced by the Vatican, that made Fellini an international sensation. A panoramic portrait of contemporary Roman decadence?—?parties, paparazzi, and promiscuous sex?—?La Dolce Vita inaugurated the cycle of ambitious, extravagant, often autobiographical works that cemented Fellini’s fame and gave rise to the term “Felliniesque.”

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I Vitelloni
Italy/France 1953
Federico Fellini

November 6 (Friday) 6:15 pm
November 9 (Monday) 8:30 pm
November 11 (Wednesday) 8:30 pm
November 15 (Sunday) 6:00 pm

New Restoration! Fellini’s 1953 version of Slackers was his first work to draw serious international attention and helped set the stage for the phenomenal success of La Strada the following year. Semi-autobiographical, and very much in the neorealist tradition, Fellini’s film offers a fond, seriocomic study of five bored and aimless young layabouts?.

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La Strada
(The Road)
Italy 1954
Federico Fellini

November 6 (Friday) 8:45 pm
November 11 (Wednesday) 6:00 pm
November 12 (Thursday) 6:15 pm
November 14 (Saturday) 3:15 pm
November 20 (Friday) 6:15 pm

New Restoration! Fellini’s poetic fable was his breakout work and first unquestioned masterpiece; La Strada won hearts and collected prizes around the world. Giulietta Masina (Fellini’s wife) gives one of cinema’s most memorable performances as Gelsomina, a sweet, simple peasant girl who is “sold” by her mother to Zampanò (Anthony Quinn), a brutish strongman in a travelling circus.

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Il Bidone
(The Swindle)
Italy/France 1955
Federico Fellini

November 12 (Thursday) 8:45 pm
November 15 (Sunday) 8:30 pm
November 19 (Thursday) 6:00 pm
November 21 (Saturday) 4:00 pm

New Restoration! Fellini’s often-forgotten follow-up to the hugely successful La Strada is a neorealist crime drama that flirts with film noir. Featuring a commanding lead performance from American tough-guy actor Broderick Crawford (All the King’s Men), Il Bidone relates the tragic tale of three small-time con men who pose as priests in order to swindle the poor.

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(Otto e mezzo)
Italy 1963
Federico Fellini

November 20 (Friday) 8:45 pm
November 21 (Saturday) 7:00 pm
November 22 (Sunday) 7:00 pm
November 26 (Thursday) 7:00 pm
November 28 (Saturday) 3:45 pm

New Restoration! Fellini’s Oscar-winning “eighth-and-a-half” feature is his consensus masterpiece and one of cinema’s most influential works. The film was made in response to enormous attention heaped upon the director for La Dolce Vita. 8½ was named one of the top ten films of all time in Sight and Sound’s 1972, 1982, 2002, and 2012 polls of international critics. Its self-referential title adds up Fellini’s seven solo features and his three “half” films up to that time.

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Juliet of the Spirits
(Giulietta degli spiriti)
Italy/France 1965
Federico Fellini

November 23 (Monday) 7:00 pm
November 25 (Wednesday) 7:00 pm
November 28 (Saturday) 7:00 pm
December 1 (Tuesday) 7:00 pm

New Restoration! Fellini’s chic, hallucinatory feast-for-the-eyes abounds in ravishing colours and spectacular sets and costumes. “The cinema is the unique and perfect tool to explore with precision the inner landscapes of the human being,” Fellini said of his intentions. “I’ve always wanted to do an extrasensorial tale, born entirely of the imagination. This is it.”

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