Great political thriller drama that starts in 1938 Italy and with Jean-Louis
Trintignant as the opportunistic Marcello, working
for the fascistic regime. At the end of the film he's an bitter and
unhappy man without a soul, empty and miserable due to
the choices he's made, or not made. But it's hard to cry for him as
he's an unlikeable man, a coward.
Bertolucci's famous film is shot by the great cinematographer Vittorio
Storaro and based on the great novel by Alberto
Moravia (released in Sweden as Anpasslingen, 1952, by Albert Bonniers
Förlag), my favourite novel by the author.
Marcello Clerici works for the Italian government as
an agent and he's assigned to kill a professor, an anti-fascist, living
Paris. He takes his wife Giulia (Stefania Sandrelli) with him and disguises
his mission as a honeymoon. After meeting the
professor, who already knows he's a regime killer, he starts an erotic
affair with the professor's wife, Anna (Dominique Sanda).
An interesting seemingly happy relation starts between the 2 couples.
Anna knows he's a fascist too and despises him even
though she fucks him, and the hardened regime agent Mangianelli (sent
with Marcello on the mission) despises him too,
not because he's a fascist but because he's a weakling, a pussy unwilling
to kill, and ... Marcello, probably despises himself
too. He knows he's not much of a man, contemptible, filled with emptiness,
a walking void.
An absolutely fascinating character study and with a harrowing scene
in the car in the woods and with the ending scene
Blu-ray presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.66:1 with
a PCM italian audio with english subtitles
Extras: Audio commentary with David Forgacs, a 51 minutes documentary
Bernardo Bertolucci: Reflections of Cinema with
a survey of his films, and according to the sleeve with a Booklet (that
was sadly missing from my copy)