Friday, May 8, 2009

Amarcord reveals scenes of an Italian childhood

Posted By on Fri, May 8, 2009 at 10:00 AM

click to enlarge REMEMBER WHEN: Federico Fellini
  • REMEMBER WHEN: Federico Fellini

Two things obsess director Federico Fellini throughout his Oscar-winning memory film Amarcord: the left and right cheeks of the female derriere, which he captures in loving, lingering close-ups, wiggling down Main Street, settling atop bicycle seats or otherwise straining at the fabric of tight dresses.

Amarcord came out in 1973, but serves as a reminder of how Fellini films like La Dolce Vita found American audiences who appreciated their unabashed sensuality in the 1950s and 1960s. The film's point of view justifies, or at least excuses, its ardent appreciation of the feminine form. Translated as "I Remember," Amarcord flashes back to Fellini's loosely autobiographical adolescence in a coastal Italy town. Young Titta (Bruno Zanin), a strapping teen lad in short pants, ogles the village's voluptuous ladies and pines for both sexual release and romantic companionship. It makes sense that Fellini would recall memories of those months through the prism of sex.

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(Photo courtesy Janus Films)

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