8½ (1963) - full transcript

Guido is a film director, trying to relax after his last big hit. He can't get a moment's peace, however, with the people who have worked with him in the past constantly looking for more work. He wrestles with his conscience, but is unable to come up with a new idea. While thinking, he starts to recall major happenings in his life, and all the women he has loved and left. An autobiographical film of Fellini, about the trials and tribulations of film making.

Counselor! I've got him!

Down! You come down!

Down for good!

Forgive this early intrusion.

How are you?

I am a great admirer of yours.
Honored to meet you.

May I?

Can I use your typewriter, sir?

Your arm, please. Relax it.

- Your age?
- 43.

So, what are you cooking up?

Another film without hope?

- First time taking the cure?
- Yes.

Take a deep breath.

Come in.

- I'm sorry. I'll come back later.
- No, do come in.

Breathe in.


Good morning... May I smoke?


Breathe in.

- You've already read it?
- Yes.


And... what do you think?

Well, I made some notes,
but we'll talk later.

Your system is a bit worn out.
You may get dressed now.

Nice looking girl. American, right?

You've got some fine merchandise there.

This treatment will do you good,
you'll see.

Nurse. 300 ml of holy water,

3 doses to be taken at 15 minute intervals,
on an empty stomach.

- Mud bath every other day...
- What time is it?

After the mud bath, ten minutes in the
mineral water as prescribed...

- I'll wait for you at the spring.
- Yes, thank you.


Sir, your glass.

0ver here.

You want to talk about the film?
- Yes, of course.

Fine. Just tell me if you'd like
the producer to see my report.

Frankly, I wouldn't want to be
the one to cause you any trouble.

No, don't worry.
I'm the one who called you in.

0n first reading it's evident

that the film lacks a problematic,
or a philosophical premise...

Would you like to sit down?

...making the film
a series of gratuitous episodes,

perhaps amusing
for their ambiguous realism.

0ne wonders what the authors
are trying to say...

Are they trying to make us think?
To scare us?

From the start, the action reveals
a poverty of poetic inspiration.

Forgive me, but this might be
the definitive proof

that cinema is 50 years
behind all other arts.

The subject doesn't even have the merits

of an 'avant garde' film,
but it has all the shortcomings.

Here, my notes.
I doubt they will be helpful.

It's still a mystery that you'd think of me

for a collaboration that, frankly,
I don't think can work.

No, no. 0n the contrary.
You'll be most helpful.

You see, the film...
I really want to make this film.

I postponed the shoot
for two weeks because...

Mezzabotta! Pardon me.

Mezzabotta! Mario!
You're here too?


What happened to you!

Hey, big Guido, how are you?

You've sprouted quite a few
white hairs, old Snaporaz!

Are you drinking that stuff?
It's bad for you.

They said my liver is, well...
And you, what's your treatment?

Just a second... Gloria!

- Your daughter. She's all grown up.
- No, she's not my daughter.

Cruel bees, sucking all the life
from these poor flowers.

- Darling, this is my friend...
- I'm sorry. My shoes...

Gloria. Gloria Morin.
- Nice to meet you.

Fine, thank you.

I know all about you.
Pupi always, always tells me.

We even had a big fight
when I was very critical of your last film.

That's not true. You liked it a lot.

Let's go for a drink. Let's go.

And you, are you here alone?
And your wife?

- Yes, I'm alone.
- Better that way...

Well, I mean, better in general...

You heard about Tina and me?
- Tina?

We're waiting for an annulment.

That's why we're here together.
We're engaged.


Well, big Guido. What are you
working on? Something good?

Sure is the ideal place to do some thinking.

Daumier, the author, Miss...
Pardon me, what is your name?

- Gloria.
- Gloria Morin.

Nice to meet you.
I am a big admirer of yours.

I'm flattered.

Are you an actress?
Did I see your photo somewhere?

An actress. Yes, well...

I have ambitions in that area.
Actually enormous ambitions,

but that's all, for the moment.

She's got a degree in philosophy.

Allow me. Mario Mezzabotta.
- Nice to meet you.

I don't have a degree.
I'm doing my thesis. It's a bit different.

- And the subject?
- A difficult one.

The loneliness of modern man
in contemporary theater.

Interesting subject. Right, Professor?

And what is the meaning
of the capricious apparitions

of the girl of the spring?

An offer of purity?
Of warmth to the protagonist?

Of all your story's overabundant
symbols, this is the worst...

She didn't make it. Better that way.

- Yack! How are you?
- Not too bad.

- Did anybody recognize you?
- I don't think so.

You brought all that luggage?

It's just five suitcases.
Gowns occupy so much space.

I brought one... you'll see.
Did you get it all?

Carla, it's quiet here at night.
There's nothing going on.

But it's a fashionable spa.
There must be some fashion shows,

some trendy clubs,
even at our hotel.

Have you been behaving?
- Yes, yes.

Actually... I couldn't get you a room
in my hotel,

and besides it's full of people who know me.

So, I found someplace else.
A perfect hotel...

Very pretty, you know...
- But why?

- And how's this guy?
- Sgulp? Great.

You look a little pale. How come?

See, the hotel is right here.

Signora, guests!

See. Like I told you. It's not...

but it's very quiet. If you're hungry,

I'll get them to bring a couple
of sandwiches.

It feels a little sad here.
- No, it's typical!

Besides I'm hungry.
You had lunch, but I didn't.

Hello, Sir.

How's the solitaire coming along?

Everything's ready,
the room, the bathroom.

Rest assured.
Signora will feel at home.

Yes, thank you. You wouldn't
have anything ready for lunch?

- The restroom, please?
- It's over there.

I'll see to it personally.

Trains, such horrible things.
They leave your hands so black.

Are you happy I'm here?
- Yes.

- Really happy or a little happy?
- Very happy.

Hmm. Smack!

Mm, what a nice smell!

Guido, I thought this black velvet
was going to wrinkle.

- Really? Good, good.
- But no. Not a wrinkle.

Even after a three-hour trip.

You didn't even tell me you like it.
Do you like it?

Such a beautiful lady!

So refined.
That thing she has on her head...

What is it? Ploosh?

- Plush, plush.
- Ah, ploosh.

I looked around for it like crazy.
I was quite desperate.

But you know me.
When Carla makes up her mind...

- Snarp!
- Sgulp!

I read a good Donald Duck last week...

There was a dinosaur...

- Here she is, my sweet-buns.
- Be good, a dinosaur...

Guido be good.
What do you want to do now?

Are you sure you've been behaving?
- Sure, why?

Anyway, now sweet-buns is hungry.
0h, my wedding ring.

Listen, Guido.
That little thing you promised me...

What little thing?

Now I bet she brings up
her husband again.

You don't think so?
You'll see, old Snaporaz.

My poor Luigi doesn't seem
happy at all.

You see, my husband is not
the confident type.

He gets depressed.

He's not stupid, you know.
He's actually very clever...

It's so hot here!

He knows all of Roman history by heart.

He just needs a push.

He's still working at the
fuel company, same salary.


Be good and put down my purse.
You'll break it.

I love that little purse.
He gave it to me.

Why don't you find him a job?

You know so many people.
You've promised it so many times.

I even had a dream about it.

I dreamed that
you did find him a job,

but he'd lost his mind
and killed us both.

- Who?
- You and me!

Know where we were?

In that little street, Via della Croce,
where I bought you

the same tie your wife did.
Do you remember?

And I never knew
if you were wearing hers or mine.

We were there on a cot,
in each other's arms, naked.

And he came in and he killed us
both with a broom!

- Draw the blinds more.
- Yes.

That's it. Now go into
the corridor for a minute,

then pretend you've come
to the wrong room

and found a stranger.

0h, that's good.
We've never done this one.

Hold it there.
Let me look at you.

No. No. Your make-up
needs to be more, more...

- More what?
- More like a slut!

Give me your eyeliner.

- Nice lampshade.
- Yes, yes.

- I'd like one for my place.
- Don't move.

What is this hotel called?

The Railway Hotel.

I want to write to my
husband so he'll send me

an express letter right away.
He writes such nice letters.

I'll let you read them.
- Fine, but keep still...

Make a slutty face.

Go out in the corridor.

- So, it's a part I have to play.
- Yes.

Who do you think I am?
0ne of your actresses?

You don't think
I could be one of them?

Not me. I wouldn't want
to lead that life.

I like staying home.

Go on, get out. I'm sleeping now.

Tell me. If I were really
to do something like this,

would you be jealous?

Why? Would you really?

Who knows?

- May I get you something?
- No, I just came out on a whim.

- Would you like me to run you a bath?
- No, I was just...

- A glass of water, perhaps?
- No, thank you.

What did she want?
What did she say?

The owner, she wanted
to give me a glass of water.

Come here. Come.

0pen up the sheet.

- Guido, do you love me a little?
- Yes, yes.

Is that you, Mama?

So many tears, my son,
so many tears.

Papa, wait! Don't go.

We talked so little.

Listen Papa,
I have so many questions.

I cannot answer them yet.

See the ceiling here? It's so low.

I would have liked it higher.
It's ugly, my son, ugly.

I would have liked it different.
Couldn't you take care of it?

You used to draw so well. I'd like...

0h, the Commendatore,
he shouldn't have bothered.

- Hello.
- Respects. He's got very little time.


How is he doing, this son of mine?

Careful. Don't let him move you.

He isn't doing well? How come?

It is so hard, realizing that
one has made such huge mistakes.

But l...

Mother prepared you
a little something.

A little cheese and two peaches.

Don't worry about me.

Sure, this place gets a little lonely,

but your mother comes every day.

She keeps me company, you know.
And keeps everything in order.

A little decorum is always necessary.

That's how we were brought up.

And with your wife, Luisa -- all fine?

Yes. Luisa...

You two together have been
my joy. Goodbye, son...

What is this place?
Do you like it here?

I haven't figured it out yet.

But it's going much better.

At first, you see, at first...

Guido! I do my best.
What more can I do?

Poor Guido, you must be tired.
Shall we go home?

I'm Luisa, your wife.
Don't you recognize me?

What are you thinking about?

- Hello.
- Hello.

Good afternoon.

Guido! ln a few days,
I'll get you an introduction

so you can get
all the advice you need.

Nice mystical figure. Right?

I brought you the three old men.

0ne is a Russian,
another is a retired general...

What old men?

The ones for the role of the Father.

Cover me, Cesarino...

Come here, buffoon.

How are you?
So nice to see you, Super Tarzan!

- I called you six times.
- Yes, yes I know.

- It's about Claudia's script.
- So?

I thought about mailing it to you.

In fact, I've already mailed it.
- Really?

You've still got your looks.
Why don't you go back to acting?

I was up all night with
an idea for the spaceship.

Why don't we make the upper story...

Conocchia, don't take my arm!
I hate it! And wear a jacket!

Now I need to wear a jacket
to talk to you...

How are you? How was your trip?

Good. It's been an hour...

What a blinding vision! Beautiful!

- Really?
- Yes.

You're always telling me
I'm 'bellissima'

but you never tell me about my part.

How was my screen test?
- Great, or you wouldn't be here.

They told me I have to look
motherly and eat a lot of pasta.

I should gain six pounds. Is this all?

See? You already know
more than I do.

You are the author.
You should be telling me something.

- What should this lady do?
- What?


I don't want to bother you.
The hotel is grand,

the whisky, excellent.
But I have three questions.

Yes, yes, later. What is it?
Ah, yes, yes. Pardon me.

Agostini, we should...

I just didn't feel like talking to that guy.

Claudia is getting offers
from all over the world.

I can't keep her waiting.
Give her something.

Do you have a script,
a few pages, an idea?

Does Claudia realize that this
might be a great part?

Perhaps the best she's ever
played? I'll explain...

I'm telling you as a friend,
you're gonna lose her.

- You want to see the old men or not?
- Are you crazy? We're ready...

- The old men.

- Where are they?
- Here.

Signora Carla called. She doesn't
want to stay in that hotel.

It's ugly. She's right.
- What can I do? Bring her here?

I'll call the old men.

Sorry, I wanted to introduce you
to my little wife.


She writes too. She's a columnist
for some ladies' magazines.

She's got a few questions for you.

My readers go crazy for romance.

Could you tell me something
about your love life?

Here they are.
Say hello to the Dottore.

Step down. You too, General.

- How old are you?
- 70.

- And you?
- 64.

- And you?
- 68.

They aren't old enough.

What? This one
has one foot in the grave.

Next time I'll get three corpses.
You asked for a pathetic type...

This one makes you wanna cry
the minute you see him.

Hello, Commendatore.

If you kneel, what do I do?

Get up or you'll hurt yourself.
How are you, little Guido?

Hello, Commendatore.

We took a helicopter.
This one screamed the whole way.

Where's the swimming pool?

We haven't even checked in. Shut up!

Has the treatment helped?
- Yes.

- Feeling better? Here.
- What is it?

Just a token.

- You're always giving me presents.
- It's just like mine.

It doesn't need winding.

A watch! A little watch, everyone!

- So, are your ideas any clearer now?
- Yes, I really think so.

We've got the Americans...

I've seen her passport.
She's 52 years old?

Ah, she's a little girl.

Good evening, signora.

And who are you, darling?

Mr. Director, another little question...

He wants to know the relationship
between Catholicism and Marxism.

Thank you, I got it.

You want to know about
my political affiliation.

As an honest man,
and all of you ltalians are,

you should be able to answer me.

Is ltaly an essentially Catholic country?

Yes, it is!

You shut up and eat your ice-cream.

It's the estimate for the spaceship.

I need to talk to you later,
face to face,

I'm at the end of my rope.
This is a madhouse!

Fine, we'll discuss it later.
What was that about your cholesterol?

...only one great writer.
The early Fitzgerald.

Then his writing became an orgy
of pragmatism or brutal realism.

What does Left or Right mean?

You're such an optimist
to believe that in a world

this confused and chaotic
there are people so lucid

as to belong exclusively
to the Left or the Right.

The Americans have this new
theory about cholesterol...

- Is your ice-cream good?
- Very good.

Could you say approximately
how many scenes she'll be in?


- How many scenes?
- Five.

0nly five.

Maybe six, or even seven.

Good evening.

Hi, Guido.

The Ambassador's got his eye on signora.


- I thought you'd want to know.
- Good, now I know.

- Do you want me to ask her to dance?
- Yes, ask her.

Dear friends there's only one truth...

But I am so anxious to know,
to understand my character.

I need to coexist with my character
for a while before shooting...

The lady says she needs
to know her character.

I need to get inside her skin,
her ideas, or I'll fail.

Hasn't the Maestro explained
the part yet?

- No.
- I am sorry, dear lady.

I don't have such information.
I'm only the producer.

Guido, isn't it true that I know nothing?
- Right. Not a thing.

And now three days of rest.

They look like glass.
The first cherries of spring.

Thanks. And for Guido?

Mario Mezzabotta,
all 200 pounds of him.

Shall we take a little walk?

I know... Naturally,
you think I've lost it.


- I'm 30 years her senior. So what?
- It's all right.

I may be the fool, the old imbecile,
the one who foots the bill. So what?

Could you create something important,
beautiful and real on a commission?

For instance, if the Pope asked you?

Yes, yes. I'll think about it.
Excuse me.

Listen, I'm not deluding myself.

Maybe she's only with me
for the money.

Actually, that's certainly it.

But I've never felt closer
to anybody in my life.

Just look at her.
She's pretty, charming, intelligent.

She has it all. 0nly for the money?

But there are so many rich young men
around these days, loads of them.

It's clear. She cares for you.

Right. And she hasn't tried
to pressure me.

I made up my mind rationally.

The poor thing has never
even mentioned my wife,

my family, never a reproach.

How did you meet her?

In London. She was in school
with my daughter.

How many years have you
been married?

Many. 31 .

And your wife...

My wife took it really badly.
She hates her.

While Gloria, poor thing,
is fond of her.

So spell it out. I am a fool!

There must be a shooting schedule.

0therwise we're off to Germany.
We have other offers.

Will you be leaving me
in the dark 'til the end?

You look like a little snail.

- What is a little snail?
- Une petite escargot.

Can you hear the voice
of the springs?

The Romans used to call it
'Happy Waters.'

Maya, let's entertain these bores.

May l?

Are you ready, Maya?
What am I holding?

A velvet purse.

- And inside?
- A white handkerchief.

A red one.

- No drugs, I hope.
- No, it's aspirin.

- A purse.
- Is there any money in it?

2,725 lire.

And this lady here.
What is she thinking?

No dirty thoughts, I hope.

Just think about something.

About what?

Whatever you like.
Are you thinking?


I'd like to live another 1 00 years.

Best of luck!

And what is in this pretty
lady's head?

Let me be.

May I think about someone?

Yes. Go ahead, Lady!

Forget about it. I'm ashamed.

What about?

Can I really think of a person?

I'd be afraid to have my thoughts read.

Don't you worry darling,
no risk there.

Would you like to leave? It's cold.

A little kiss and a big slap.
Is that right?

Ladies and gentlemen,
you're thinking, 'What a trickster.'

Well, sorry to disappoint you,
but there's no trick.

And it isn't just a coincidence.

It's an exceptional example
of magnetic fields and telepathy.

I transmit your thoughts to Mlle. Maya.

You! Do you believe
you can hide your thoughts?

Please, leave her alone.
Don't insist.

Thoughts are sacred.

See, it's all a game.

Maya, are you ready?

Just a moment, could we know
what you gentlemen are thinking?

You for instance.

What are you thinking?

What else? My director.
My cross and my delight.

- How are you?
- Fine. And you?

It has been quite a while... years!

Unfortunately yes, my dear.

Just a moment. You're famous now.

Cut it out.
Just tell me what's your trick?

Well, it's partly a trick,
but part of it is real.

I don't know how, but it happens.
- Can you transmit anything?

Anything. Except for her to get lost.

- Do you want to try?
- Yes. Wait.

I bet now, with you, it won't work.

I don't understand. I can't repeat...

Asa... nisi... masa?
ls this right?

- Right?
- Yes.

But what does it mean?

Guido, come here!
Where are you?

Don't be spoiled! What a wonder!

I don't want to take a bath,
I don't want to...

Come here... Iet me catch you?

I know what that rascal wants.

He wants to be carried
by his sweetheart,

doesn't he, the strapping lad.

Come here. Come here.

He never wants to take
the wine bath, the naughty boy.

Don't you know that if you do
you'll grow into a strong man?

Guido is scared! Guido is scared!

The Devil and damnation!

Granny, granny!

The wood is all wet this year.

This prowling cat is just
like your grandfather.

Always on the prowl
and only comes in for food.

Shame on you! Go to bed.

Last time I slammed the door
in his face

and left him outside for two days.

I could have married again
and found a handsome man,

rest assured, better
than your grandfather.

What an idiot I am!

I thought that if I took another
husband, my first husband,

whether in heaven or hell,
wouldn't have waited.

Be quiet! Go to bed, children!

Nanny, Claudio wet himself!

What are you doing?
Go to sleep. You too, sleep.

Little Guido, get under the covers.
It's cold. Be still.

Did you say your prayers?

Aren't you a beautiful sticky bun?
The most beautiful!

Give me a kiss, too.

Who do you love best? Me?
ls that right?

You can't fool me.

I'm going to give you a spanking.

I can tell when you're pretending.

Sleep tight, little creatures.

Close your eyes.

Guido, don't close your
eyes tonight!

It's the night the portrait's eyes move.
You're not scared, are you?

You must be quiet!

Uncle Agostino will look into
the corner and find the treasure!

Don't be afraid, Guido!
We'll be rich!

Do you remember the spell?
Asa Nisi Masa... Asa Nisi Masa... sh!

Sir, you got two or three calls from Rome.
Your wife, I think.

Fine. Get me the line.

- Gino, get the gentleman the line.
- All right.

- This is for you. Good night, sir.
- Good night.

Marcella, that call from Rome, quickly.

No, I'm not offended.

There's only one thing
that offends me.

You know me. No.

I forgive him everything.

Let's have a little chat.

Sit beside me for a moment.

No, I'm going to bed.
I'm very tired and waiting for a call.

Would you like some?

No, thank you.
I have such a headache.

Give me your hands.

No, sit down.

I have a healing fluid
in my left hand.

I put it on my belly when it aches.

Take off your hat.

Is it any better?

Yes, maybe.

Why do you look at me that way?

0h, don't say I'm beautiful.
You make it sound insulting.

What's with you?

I don't know.

I feel I made all the wrong
decisions in my life and in my work.

Tell me, why do you enjoy
torturing me?

Torturing you?

Talk to me as you would
to an old friend.

I need to feel close to my director.

Did you see my last movie,
the one shot in Belgrade?

My character was a woman
marked by the injuries of time,

yet still desirable...

- Play "Mystification".
- I don't know it.

But yes...

What a character... this woman...


In whom people find protection
and love.

I am this character.
I am like her in life and love.

That's why I'm so lonely.

And I have always forgiven
everything in the man...

the men, I love.

- Sir, Rome on the line.
- Thank you.

I am very sensual. Wicked, too!

Yes, yes, you're very close.
I'll be right back.

Rome on the line. You may speak.

Hello, yes!

- Do you want Luisa?
- Yes.

Feeling guilty, you beast?
This is Rossella.

Hi, Rossella. How are you?
Luisa was looking for me.

Where were you this time?
Your rest cure? What an excuse...

Here comes Luisa.

Guido, I called you twice.
Where were you?

I know. I'm sorry.

I was up in the production office.
We're working.

How are you?

Not bad... And the treatment?

Is it helping?

Perhaps. But, you know,
I can't really rest.

And you? What are you doing?
Having fun?

The usual. I'm with Rossella, Tilde, Enrico.
They were about to leave.

But are you having a good time?
Did you meet anybody?

Hardly. It's a terrible bore.

But for my work, it's better this way.

- Good night, Guido.
- 'Night.

You've met no one you know?
Are you always alone?

0f course.


Luisa, why don't you come visit?

Just a short stay.
It's easy to get here.

When are you going
to start shooting, you bore?

I don't know.
Let me talk to Luisa, please.

So, should I come?
Do you want me to?

If you'd like to.

You could even bring a friend.

But would it make you happy?

0f course, or I wouldn't ask you.

- Sir, are you staying on?
- No.

When should I come?

Whenever it's good for you.

Careful, I'll come.

Darling, I wouldn't have asked.

I'd love it...
So long, and good night.

Bye, Mr. Alienated. Good night.

Night, Guido.

Monsieur Guido, my agent thought...

Just a second, madam. I am going
to step into the office so...

- Shit!
- It's in my best interest.

Tomorrow morning
we'll discuss everything. All right?

Beams for the central structure:
1 0,000.

Planks for steps: 260.


Do you need something?

No, thanks.
Go on with your work.

What a well-behaved
production team.


0h, hi Eleonora.

2,350. Corrugated iron.

Listen, Dottore, since you're here.

I called the pensione about
the German, but she's gone.

- You must find her.
- She's in Paris with a circus.


What should I do?

What an honor, Dottore.

You've caught me
with my pants down!

Listen Guido.
About the farm... there's that...

Ah, here. Where's this place?

It doesn't even have a note
about the address, nothing!

It's in the Prince's estate.

- Who's in here?
- My little nieces.

Eva and Dina.


C'mon. Let him take a look at you.

Perhaps he'll give you
a little part.

- Nice to meet you.
- My pleasure.

Where are you from?

- Trieste.
- Hurray for ltaly!

You've got a nice set up here,
don't you?

Tell him about my cousin.

Guido. This one's cousin
is six feet tall.

You should see her.
She might be good for the movie.

This one... you she-devil...

It's true. She's tall like me
standing on the bed.


She's twice been voted
Miss Nylon Stockings.

Is Guido in there? I'm coming in.

Sleep, Conocchia, sleep.
I'll see you tomorrow.

May I ask you a question?

Go ahead.

My friend here says...
you can't make a love story.

- Shut up!
- She's right.

Should I wake you up
in the morning, Guido?

No, thanks.

0ur commander will never
catch us unprepared.

This production crew never sleeps!

Such a splitting headache.
What did I eat?

They're always horsing around,
but they're good guys.

Do you need anything, Guido?
ls it a new idea?

Do you have something to tell me?

No, thank you, no.

Go back to bed.
I don't need anything.

- Anything at all.
- No, thank you. Good night.

Good night my ass!

Who can sleep here?
How can I get any sleep?

Conocchia, calm down.

Allow me. I have been in this
business for 30 years,

I've worked on movies
you couldn't begin to imagine

and I have never been afraid
of anything!

What are you shouting for,
you crazy old man!

There, you've said it now. 0ld.

Finally you've spat it out.
Conocchia is old.

What do you want?
Get back inside.

You always keep me in the dark.
I never know what to do.

When to talk or when to shut up.
I don't want to bother you.

I don't want to know
what this movie is about.

- You want to keep it a secret? Go ahead.
- Please, go back to bed.

But if I'm to help you out,
as I've always done,

and you were so happy then,
you must tell me something!

Tell me: get rid
of the French woman...

this is how I want the spaceship...
tell me: go hang yourself,

but do tell me something.

You've changed so much,
Guido my friend.

What are you doing now?
Crying? Aren't you ashamed?

I'll be leaving tomorrow.
I'm quitting.

I don't want to be in your way.
You need some young blood.

Just be careful. You're not
the man you used to be, either.

A crisis of inspiration?

And what if it weren't a
passing one, my dear?

What if it's the final collapse
of a filthy liar

with no flair or talent? Sgulp!

Let's say you are purity itself.

But what the hell does it mean
to be really honest?

Didn't you hear
what the Falcaccio said?

"lt's time to set all the symbols aside,
the echoing of purity, innocence, escape."

What is it you want then?

Yes, this could be it.

There's a museum in the town,
and you, the guard's daughter,

grew up surrounded by images
of ancient beauty...

You're right.

I've come to stay forever.

I want to create order,
I want to cleanse...

I want to create order,
I want to cleanse...


They're asking for you
from the Railway Hotel.

Fine. I'll take it.

Hello? Who's that? Hello?

Guido, I feel dreadful.
The mineral water made me sick.

I have a temperature. Come.
Come here, immediately.

At this time of night?
I can't. I'll come tomorrow.


The poor thing, if you only knew
how she was asking for you.

Here's the ice.

- She's melting. She's got at least 1 04.
- Yes, fine. Just go now.

- Should I bring the peas?
- What peas?

When she was delirious
she asked for peas. It's a good sign.

No, just forget about it.

- If you need anything, let us know.
- Yes, thanks.

Carla, is this the first time you've run
such a high fever so suddenly?

No. It shoots up over nothing.

Then it goes away.
My husband is used to it.

It doesn't scare him

No, don't get up.
Stay under the covers.

- I'm so hot. I'm thirsty.
- Wait, I'll give it to you. Here.

Drink slowly or you'll get
all bloated!

- Is it day or night?
- What are you talking about?

It's four o'clock in the afternoon.

Listen, now we'll wait for the
doctor and see what he has to say.

It wouldn't be a bad idea to send
your husband a telegram.

We can't take full responsibility for this.
Yes, he ought to know.

No, I don't want it to be over.
If he comes, he'll take me away.

And I have bought
so many nice little dresses.

Why did you gorge on
all that water?

That's for sick people.
Are you sick?

You're always ready when
there's something to gorge on.

What else should I do?
You're always leaving me here alone.

I drafted my will two years ago.

Anyway, it's not like you die sooner
just because you make a will.

You see, I have a brother
and a sister too,

but I'd like the apartment
to go to my husband.

It's mine, but how would
the poor thing manage with out it...

even if he does get remarried?

Ah, these sheets!

Listen, tell me the truth,
the truth, you hear?

Why do you stay with me?

What can I tell the Cardinal tomorrow?

Yes, I did read the little synopsis
your producer sent us.

It's very interesting.
From a factual point of view though,

the meeting between
the protagonist

and a prince of the church could
not happen during a mud treatment

as you describe it.
I'm sorry but it's absolutely not feasible.

A high prelate has his
own private room.

True, but I was looking for
an unconventional setting.

What do you mean?

The protagonist received
a Catholic upbringing and...

- Good morning.
- Monsignor, this is Guido Anselmi.

Nice to meet you.
You must be the director.


Is the subject of this film
a religious one?

Well, yes, in a manner of speaking.

As I was saying, the protagonist
had a Catholic upbringing,

Iike all of us, for that matter.
So, he has certain complexes,

certain needs he can no
longer repress.

And a prince of the church appears to him
like the depositary of a truth

that he can no longer accept
although it still fascinates him.

So, he seeks contact, some help,
perhaps a flash of understanding.

Saul in Damascus, right?

Don't we all harbor such hopes?

I do realize the idea might sound a
bit superficial, gothic if you want...

No, no, that's not it.

I don't believe cinema
lends itself well to certain topics.

You mix sacred
and profane love too casually.

Isn't that so?
- Maybe.

Yours is a great responsibility.

You can either corrupt
or educate thousands of souls.

His Eminence
will listen to you all the same.

You can ask him some questions.

Allow me to introduce you
to the director.

Please, do sit down.

Please pardon the intrusion,
Your Eminence. I wouldn't presume,

But my producer is restless,
perhaps he's right,

and he insisted that l...

- Are you married?
- Yes.

- Any children?
- Yes. I mean, no.

- How old are you?
- 43.

- Do you hear this singing bird?
- Pardon?

- Do you know what it's called?
- No.

It's called Diomedeo.

The legend has it that
when Diomedes died,

all these little birds gathered
and accompanied him to his grave

singing a funeral lamentation.

Hear? It sounds like wailing.

Guido, Guido let's go see
the Saraghina.


Saraghina, dance the Rumba.


Shame on you, shame on you...

It's a mortal sin, it's a mortal sin...

I don't believe it, it can't be true...

Look at your mother, look at her!

- Mother.
- Stop there.

0h God, I'm so ashamed,
so ashamed and hurt!

But above all, during his whole life
and in any place where he lived,

the pious Luigi most abhorred
any talk or dealing with women,

whose presence he avoided
in such a way that whoever

saw him thought he had a natural
dislike of them...

Get down!

Don't you know that Saraghina
is the devil?

No, I didn't. I really did not.

So, what does it mean?

It's a character inspired by
your childhood memories.

No connection with a real
critical conscience.

No, if you really want to make
a polemical piece

about the ltalian Catholic
consciousness, you would need

a much higher degree of culture

as well as inexorable logic and clarity.

Forgive me, but...
your naivet? is a serious failing.

Your little memories,
bathed in nostalgia,

your inoffensive and fundamentally
sentimental evocations

are all the expressions
of an accomplice...

"How?" said the parish priest,
"With a communist?"

See? He didn't say: 'a man'.

Catholic conscience?

Just think what Suetonious was
at the time of the Caesars!

No, your intention was to denounce,
but you end up

supporting it like an accomplice.

See? What confusion...
what ambiguity!

Dear Doctor, I'm very angry with you!

But you don't need me anymore.

That isn't true, absolutely not true.

1 27: showers and mud treatments.

1 29: massages.

1 31 : inhalations.

Hello, Commendatore.

You know, I've figured out
what you're trying to talk about...

Man's inner confusion.
But you've got to be clearer.

You have to make yourself understood.
0therwise what's the use of it?

Let's go, Guido.

If what you have to say
is interesting,

it must be so for everybody.

How can you not care
if audiences understand?

I'm sorry, but that is
arrogant and presumptuous

Commendatore, let's go over there.
Inhale. Breathe deeply.

Hi, Guido.

I've saved you a spot by the jet.

I went to the spaceship this morning

and it's already gone up 50 meters...


Guido, his Eminence is
waiting for you. I repeat.

His Eminence is waiting.

Get dressed, quickly.

The Cardinal is already waiting.

Tell him everything.

Confess everything,
don't hide anything

and if you have any spare time just
put in a good word for me too.

It's a golden opportunity, Guido.
The Cardinal! You're so lucky.

He can give dispensations for anything...

Remember my divorce in Mexico City.
Get me my Mexican divorce.

He won't say no to you.

And above all show you're devout,
throw yourself down on your knees,

kiss his ring, cry,
say you've repented.

Getting in their good graces means
you can have anything you want in life.

Listen to me.

Careful, Guido. We're in your hands.

You only get five minutes.

Your Eminence, I'm not happy.

Why should you be?
That isn't your job.

Who told you we come into the world
to be happy?

0rigen says in his homilies:
Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus.

There's no salvation outside
the church.

Extra Ecclesiam, nemo salvatur.

No one will meet salvation,
outside the church.

Salus extra Ecclesiam, non est.

There's no salvation outside
the church.

Civitas dei. He who isn't
in the City of God,

belongs to the City of the Devil.

Come see this great
human phenomenon, the fakir Siva,

who has broken all
previous records...

our experiment is controlled daily
by European experts...

20,000... 22... 23,000...
and the lady in the back?

25,000? Very well,
the bid is 24,000.

Do I hear 30,000?

Splendid. 35,000... 40,000.
Going, going...

0ne more offer?
50,000, the bid is 50,000...

- When did you get here?
- Around five.

We went to the hotel,
but you weren't there.

How are you?
- Fine, fine.

Who did you come with?

With Rossella and Enrico.
Tilde's here too.

Good girl. You actually came.
You look good, you know?

Hey there, Rossa.

It's been a year since
we last danced together.

Luisa, darling. You're my treasure.

I'm so happy you came.
It's always the same.

As soon you're away...

You feel lonely.

Is it true? Did you miss me?
- Yes.

You weren't enjoying the company
of all these lovely ladies?

So you've noticed them...

No flings since you left?

Poor Guido.
And your famous virility?

- You smell so good.
- Do you like it?

You're so light.

And how's your project going?

Well, I don't think I've had
any major breakthroughs.

But what's it about?
What are you up to this time?

0h, sorry.

Listen, am I mistaken
or has Enrico fallen for you?

She's adorable, isn't she?

Bravo. Very good.

Evening signora.
So nice to have you here.


Maestro, we're at your service.
Should we get going?

I'm coming.

My dear lady, tonight you'll see

the depths of insanity
a producer can fall into.

Frankly, I'd rather not
shake hands with this one.

The moment she touches you
she knows what you're thinking.

Who else could it be?

Your guiding spirit.

Haven't you reached
that stage of intimacy yet?

- May I introduce my sister?
- Ah, the beautiful little sister!

You see the kind of women
your director attracts?

Delighted to meet you,

I just finished a screenplay
about nuclear warfare.

0nly a producer of your courage
could get it made.

Does the beautiful sorceress
belong to your harem too?

Iet's say I'm a sort of overseer.

So are you any better?
Has your isolation helped?

You do look better.
- Really?

No. Just kidding. Are you better?
Actually, I was a little worried.

It was good of you to ask Luisa to come.

The very thought made her happy.

If you don't mind I'd rather not come.
My presence is futile.

- Suit yourself.
-No, my friend. I insist. Get in Conocchia's car.

Sweetie move it, go with Laura.

- Where's your wife?
- I don't know. She was just here.

Rossella, come with us.

Yes, I want to tell you
a strange story.

My sister was a nun.
She died very young

and one night her portrait
suddenly changed its expression.

Please, get in.

Changed as if it wanted to warn me
about some danger...

I'll sit in the front.

So a couple days later
my uncle says,

Let's go to the market, kid.

He drove an lsotta Fraschini...
I was recounting a premonition...

So what do you think?

You have to be a little crazy
to listen to this director.

Bundle up. It's damp.

Renato, where are you?

Here, Commendatore.

We've gotta be ready for the 20th.

Follow me, ladies.
Careful. The ground is bumpy.

It seems to me we're a bit behind.
- No. We're already up to 70 meters.

Listen, what's up with Luisa?

She's changed all of a sudden.
She's turned so nervous and angry.

I don't know. She was so happy
to come see you.

You might have said something
that upset her.

- Never.
- And what's this?

I find this extraordinarily fascinating.

This model will be
superimposed on the structure,

to create the illusion that
the rocket is on the launch pad.

- Am I right?
- Right.

This is the rocket's launch pad.

The most important moment
in the movie.

No photos.
- Just one, Commendatore.

What is your husband up to this time?
Science fiction?

What do I know? Ask him.

Giancarlo wrote him
such a beautiful story about Martians.

What is this amusement park for?

You have no idea what
a job this was.

No construction company
wanted to take it on.

It rests entirely on sand.

How much concrete did it take?

Tons! 400 tons.

Commendatore, if you don't mind,

I'll stop at the end of this
first flight. I have vertigo.

For 80 million you could buy
at least ten apartments.

It's a pompous shack, just like him.

The little sister-in-law is not
exactly tender with our director.

Maybe she's in love with him.
- With him?

I pray day and night
that I'll be spared a husband like him.

What now? More climbing?

I'd be glad to carry you.

When I think he made me spend
80 million on this structure.

Wouldn't a well-crafted backdrop
have been better?

A backdrop! That's out of
your grandfather's time.

Besides, are they your millions,

Luisa, are you cold?
Take my jacket.

No, no. Thank you.

Anyway, we're going
back to the hotel.

Is something wrong?

You've gotten sad all of a sudden.
Am I wrong?

No. I'm not sad at all.

The sequence starts with an image
of planet Earth

completely wiped out
by a thermonuclear war...

Guido seemed glad to see you,

...and the spaceship, our new Noah's Ark,
tries to escape, while the rest of humanity

seeks refuge on another planet .

More than 10,000 extras,
even 15,000, a tragic crowd.

We're really going to see all this
in your movie?

The prophet is raising his voice.
He's decided to scare everybody.

Why not? Don't tell me you also love
movies where nothing happens?

In my movie I have all
sorts of things happen.

I'm putting everything in.
Even a tap-dancing sailor.

Sailor, come here.

What did you learn in America?

No, I don't want water.
Dance and I'll give you a part.


What's up with you?
What's going on?

Rossella, cut the big sister tone.
It puts me off right away.

Mr. Director, what part do I get?

What does Luisa think about me?
What does she want to do?

What's my part? My part?

Go away!

You know Luisa.
She doesn't say much.

Not even to me,
and I'm her best friend.

I really don't know. She's lost.

0ne day she says one thing,
another day, something else.

Unfortunately, I think the only
thing she'd like

is for you to be someone else.


It's the mistake everyone makes.

But that kind little fellow,
is he in love with her?

You'd like that, so your conscience
won't gnaw at you anymore.

You're such a scoundrel.

Poor Enrico, he's so awkward.
Everybody's noticed.

He hangs around, listens to her,
keeps her company.

He's a great friend.

I thought my ideas were so clear.

I wanted to make an honest film.
No lies whatsoever.

I thought I had something
so simple to say.

Something useful to everybody.

A film that could help to bury forever

all those dead things
we carry within ourselves.

Instead, I'm the one without the courage
to bury anything at all.

And now I'm utterly confused.
This launch pad to deal with...

I wonder why things turned out
this way.

When did I go wrong?

I really have nothing to say...

but I want to say it all the same.

And your spirits,
why don't they come to my rescue?

You always said they had
plenty of messages for me.

Let them get to work!

I've already told you,
your attitude is wrong,

Your curiosity toward them is childish.

You want too many guarantees.

- Fine, but what do they say?
- Always the same thing. Even now.

They're very reasonable spirits.
They know you very well.


They say you're free,
but you must learn to choose.

You don't have much time.
And you have to hurry.

Guido, are you coming up?
Yes or no?

Room 320, please.

Nobody's in.

Fine, thanks.

Have you got a headache?

No, it's a tranquilizer.

Do you take them often?

Sometimes, to help me sleep.

What's worrying you now?


If you could only see yourself.

Why are you laughing?

I don't think I could ever betray you,
if only because I couldn't bear

the ridiculous effort
of having to hide and lie.

But obviously it's easy for you.

Listen Luisa.
I am very happy you're here,

but I am very tired and sleepy.

Sleep then. Good night.

I don't know what you think my
life is like, reducing it all

to the pettiness of somebody
stealing from the cookie jar.

What do you know about my life?
What I hate and what I don't.

I only know what you show me.

What am I showing you?

Come on, tell me what you see.

You and your judgmental moralism.
What are you getting at?

Nothing. I know we've
been stagnating for years.

But it's you; you're the one
who always calls me back

and wants to start all over again.

0nce and for all, I don't want
to restart anything.

But what do you want?

Why did you want me here?
What good am I to you?

What are you trying to get from me?
What is it you want?

Don't fret. I'd already spotted
her last night when I got in.

I've asked no questions,
so don't say a word.

Spare me the embarrassment
of having to listen to your lies.

She must have been born
in March or April.

She's got all the characteristics
of an Aries. She's the Aries type.

I'll tell you what type she is.

Exactly the type most likely to make

a good companion for feeble,
spineless, confused men.

Luisa, I didn't know.

I'm seeing her for the first time,
like you.

Really, in a place like this,
where there are so many people,

it's no surprise to run into the poor thing.

So this is why you've been
tormenting me since last night.

You should have told me.

What annoys me most is
that people could think

I'd go with somebody who
dresses that way.

Have you seen her clothes?

Listen, can't we go for a walk?

Let's not talk about this anymore.

It's been over for three years.
Finished. Enough.

He drives me crazy.
He pretends he's telling the truth.

He acts honest.
As if he's the one who's right.

How can you live this way?

It's not right living this way,

not letting others know
what's true and what's false.

Is it possible that for you
it's all the same? How?

You're right. I know, I'm boring.

How sad having to play
the bourgeois wife who doesn't understand.

You tell me, what should I do.

I really can't laugh about it
the way you do.

No darling, I'm not laughing.

What do you tell her?

What disgusts me the most is that
you've mixed her up in our life.

She knows everything
about you and me.

That whore. Cow!

You're a real pain, you know.

And yet...

Signora Carla, you sing so well.

No, I'm just an amateur.

And how pretty you look.

I've wanted to meet you for so long.
- And l, you.

You're so stylish.

No, you're the stylish one.
Me, frankly, I'm a bit trashy.

What are you talking about?
This is so refined.

Do you like it?

It's a little outfit I found in Vogue.
- Really?

If you only knew how long
it took me to find it.

But you know,
when Carla wants something...

Here he comes!

Guido's here.

Good evening, women.

Close the door, there's a storm.

How are you? Well?

Every gift comes with its nametag.

Don't get mixed up.
This is Caterina's.

He's a darling!

And this one is for my darling sister-in-law,

because she's finally understood
how things should be.

We'll draw your bath right away.

Gloria, this is you-know-what.

Thanks. I need to talk to you, Guido.

I know what she wants to tell you.

Now we'll have to send her away
because she's acting jealous.

What were you doing upstairs?

I went to see those poor things.
They'd always be alone, if not for me.

The role doesn't suit her.
She's only a common bourgeoise.

She has no class.

Leave him alone now.
He's got to take his bath.

0h Guido, this is splendid,
I've always wanted one like it.

Hurry, Carla, Hedy!
Get the buckets.

Guido, my husband wrote.

He wants me home for New Year's,
just for a day, do you mind?

If you do, I'll tell him I can't.
- I think that will be fine.

Come on, Carlotta!

- Who's that little black girl?
- A surprise from us.

She's from Hawaii,
don't you remember her?

You told us about her
so many times.

Thank you, Luisa. You're so kind.

Such a delicate little present.

That tiara is mine.

Yes, I know.
I'll give it back to you later.

0h, darling!

What a thrill to find you here.

- How are you?
- Fine.

But do tell me, who are you?

The name doesn't matter.
I'm happy to be here.

Don't ask me any questions.
- Can I stay?

0f course, you pretty thing.
I'm busy now.

But later?

What are you doing here?

Playing Pinocchio's wise cricket.
Do you mind?

No. But why are you laughing?

It's nothing. I just want to see
how you get out of this one.

You've finally got your harem,
King Solomon!

- It was high time.
- Sure was.

Lower me down.

Aren't you a little scared?

0f what? Everything is going great.

Can I stay too? I'm having such fun.

I don't want anything.
I'll just watch you.

We have rules that must be
respected. Do you know that?

Come, help me.

It's a two piece suit with a busby
in ostrich feathers. Do you like it?

Hi Hedy, it's beautiful.

So, what are the rules?

I don't know. He promised me
a part in his movie and said

I'd have to change dresses a lot.

Girls, that's enough. Get me out.

- Gloria, the talcum powder.
- Ah, yes.

Guido, do you know she prepared
something just the way you like it?

- Really?
- A cake.

- Are you happy, girls?
- 0f course!

Isn't this just what
you always wanted?

Certainly! lsn't he the best
kid in the world?

Nadine, hurry up with the powder!

0h Nadine, what was it you used
to say in Copenhagen?

We're delighted to invite
our passengers

to spend the night in Copenhagen
due to a problem with the motor.

Just listen to her voice...

The company will cover
all expenses.

Good night to you all.

Madeleine, come help us.

- Saraghina!
- Here I am. I'll carry Guido.

0h, my poor man. The water was
scalding. He's turned all red!

- Such nice, thin legs.
- Straight like when he was a boy.

He likes to act like a kid,
but he's really very complex.

Don't be fooled. I'm onto him.
He's a hypocrite.

No, he's not.

But why does he have to tell
everything to anybody?

He knows how to stand up
for himself.

Guido, help me.

Who's screaming like that?

Jacqueline. She refuses to
go upstairs with the old ones,

so we've locked her in the cellar.

It's scandalous. I don't want to
have to speak to those witches,

so much older than me. I'm 26.
Go to the Paris public register.

Jacqueline Bon Bon, 26,
the 4th of July 1 938.

You have no right
to send me upstairs.

It's not my time yet.
Look, I'm so agile. Look at my legs.

Which one of you has such a tight
little ass? Look at my chest.

Guido, don't send me upstairs.
I don't want to go upstairs.

You know the rules.
The rules are the rules.

Guido l...

Calm down. Apparently
it's nice upstairs, too.

- Your earring. Here.
- Thank you.

You've always loved me. Please,
tell him to give me an extension.

Guido, couldn't we give her
an extension?

What are you doing?
You're breaking my balls too?

I beg you Guido, just for one year.

- No extension.
- I'm not going upstairs.

- What did you say?
- I'm not going upstairs.

- Say it again if you dare.
- I'm not going upstairs!

This one is crazy. I told you we
should never have let her in.

Hey, girl!
Just look at your rulebook.

Whoever passes the age limit
shall be removed to the upper floors,

where she shall be treated equally well,

but shall live basking
in her memories.

It's so disgusting, absurd,
we shouldn't have accepted it.

Never, right from the start.

It's not fair!

These are rules invented
by someone

who doesn't pass the test himself.

In France such a man would be
the shame of the nation.

Are we lemons to thrown out
after we're squeezed?

- Guido, they're so right.
- You're a monster.

0ur time has come!

Hurray for Jacqueline, who has
shown us the way to our freedom.

Down with the tyrant,
down with Bluebeard!

We have the right to be loved
'til we're 70 years old.

Down with him!

And what do you think you are?
A boy?

Let's say it once and for all,
he doesn't know how to make love.

That's the truth.

- And he falls asleep right away.
- I don't sleep. I think.

Guido, don't send us upstairs
when we get old.

Down, down.

They're rebelling upstairs too.

0h, delicious!

You pig, you liar. I came all the
way from Paris. What's my part?

Guido, who will dance for you?
You liked it so much.

I don't like it anymore.

Luisa, help me!

Sorry, but I don't meddle
in my husband's business.

If this is his decision, it's good.
Those are the rules.

Hurry up Guido, the soup's getting cold.

Can't you see I'm busy?

What an extraordinary man.

Yes, but...

He needs to act this way.
He does it almost every night.

Guido, do you remember me?

But darling, you're wounded;
I'll get you some cream...

- I don't want any cream.
- Some balm.

- I don't want any balm.
- Drops...

It's not true that he dumps you
like squeezed lemons.

Actually, he'd like to keep you all
with him always.

He is too good, too patient.

No, not me, no.

He doesn't like you. You're old.

Dear Jacqueline, we're happy
to have had the opportunity

to live with you and we wish you
the best of luck upstairs.

We'd like to reassure you
on Guido's behalf

that you were the first
showgirl in his life.

You're now entitled to
a song and dance of your choice,

with your very own spotlight.

Thank you girls, you're so kind.

Would you like me
to sing a love song?

No, better something sexy.
That was my specialty.

Guido, remember
the Apollo theater in Bologna?

Yes, I do.

No, better a happy song!

0h, I've lost my pearls.

0h, again!

You're not even listening.

Farewell, Guido.

I thought it was such
a funny situation,

the funniest part of my story.

I'd even prepared a little
speech to give at the table:

Darlings, happiness is being able
to tell the truth

without ever making anybody suffer.

Carla would have played the harp,
as on any night,

and we would have been happy
hiding in here,

far away from the world.
All of you and l.

What's wrong? Why this sadness?

See? We've made him feel guilty.

That's not it, Guido.

It has been a wonderful evening.

You mustn't be sad.

Do you need anything?

Now they'll all go to bed
and I still have a lot to do:

the laundry, all the dishes,
mend the sheets, scrub the floors

and set up breakfast for tomorrow.

Aren't we fine living all together this way?

At first I didn't understand,

that this is the way things
are meant to be.

But now...

Don't you think I'm good now?
I don't bother you anymore.

I don't ask questions.

A bit slow, wasn't l?
It's taken me 20 years to understand.

20 years since the day
we got married

and you became my husband
and I your wife.

Do you remember Guido?
Do you remember that day?

If you could only be patient
a little longer, Luisa.

But perhaps you've had it.

Frankly, I'd love to be able
to offer a word of advice.

But I think tonight you're called

to solve a problem
for which there is no solution.

Finding a precise face
for a crowd of characters

that in your script are so rough,
so vague, so superficial...

What is it we're watching?

I don't know... screen tests.

You're not well.

Quite the contrary.

Agostini, get on the catwalk
and do a little dance for us.

I'll accompany you on the piano.

Listen here. "The solitary ego

that revolves around itself
and feeds upon itself, ends up

strangled by a great cry
or a great laugh."

Words that Stendhal wrote
during his stay in ltaly.

If we sometimes read those sayings
on chocolate wrappers

instead of throwing them away,
we would be spared many an illusion.

There he is. By the door,
always ready to run away.

Good evening to you all
and apologies for the delay.

Well, what are you up to now?

- Guido where are you?
- Here.

- Come down.
- I'd rather stay up here.

Evening... Good, you're here too.
Let's get going.

Right away.

They skipped the variety act tonight
so we could use the theater.

Let's go.

Young man, it's time
to make up your mind.

I've brought all the screen tests...

Pardon me Conocchia,
but the time for his jokes is over.

All his doubts, his uncertainties,
his whims.

He had all the time he wanted,
but tonight we're here to choose.

- That's why we're all here.
- Right.

Conocchia has gotten
everything from Rome.

The new and the old screen tests,
even the ones we shot five months ago.

Now we'll go through them one by one,
and you have to say:

This is the wife,
this is the mistress,

this is the Cardinal,
this is Saraghina. Clear?

I don't want to be the joke
of the ltalian film industry

but above all I don't want you
to end up that way.

They're all ready to shoot you down.

You've got very few friends left,
on the Left or the Right.

But I am here to help you
each and every way.

We must start shooting
and we must do it immediately.

Roll the screen tests.

Miss 0limpia's screen test.

Miss 0limpia...

- Should I shut the door?
- Yes. Sway, sway your big hips.

Put down your stuff. Good.

Now go to the mirror.
Admire yourself.

More. Swell your chest.

Now go to the phone.
Slowly. Don't run.

- Why are you running?
- I'm not.

Look, hit that mark.
There, on the floor.

Hello, the concierge please?


I'd like a bottle of flat water.


No, Fiuggi is sparkling.

No, look this way.
Fiuggi is the least sparkling.

Fine, I'll take the Fiuggi.

Will this one do, Guido?

He's got to make up his mind
because she's leaving for England.

She's leaving next week, Guido.

- And who's this one?
- Shut up, you!

0r do you prefer this one.

This is an important character.

People need to like her right off the bat.
Right, Guido?

Signora, sit down
as if you were drained.

This character is a woman who
has lost the desire to fight.

because... say your line...

- Without stopping?
- What?

- Without stopping?
- Yes, yes.

I am the one who's offering you
complete freedom.

Anyway, I'm no good to you this way.
I'm just a nuisance.

And who's this?
What should she represent?

Didn't you hear? She's the wife.

Still, she's likable, soulful.
Don't you think?

- Gimme a cigarette.
- I've run out. Enrico, fill us up.

- Here you go.
- Thank you.

You're welcome.

I cannot go on like this any longer.

Now, you tell me how I should be.

Not someone who lies and swears
he's telling the truth

every second of the day.

That would be enough.
You don't even do that.

With you I never,
never know the truth.

Even in the smallest things.

Luisa, I care for you.

Lying is like breathing to you.

Repeat that, please.

Lying is like breathing to you.

So brazen.

- All lines from his life.
- Right.

I know this one. She's the princess.

Am I not alone already?
What are you giving me?

What have I got to look
forward to?

Look this way. Put on the glasses.

Repeat the last line.

Am I not alone already?

You have to say it,
yes, aggressively,

but also with deep bitterness.

He said: What?
You want a separation.

You want to be alone.

But what would you do on your own?

And she answers: why,
am I not alone already? Go on.

Guido, there's no doubt
about this one. She's perfect.

Five months. We've been going
this way for five months.

But they're all so old!

Fiuggi is sparkling.

No, it's the least sparkling.

Put down the phone.

Screen test for Miss Olimpia.

What about this one?

It's dangerous leaving me alone.

Why, what do you do?

Should I repeat the line?

No, just turn your little
head this way. Now, stop.

Where are you going?

Back to the hotel. I'm sleepy.

Wait a second. Listen.

What happened?

Nothing. Nothing ever
happens between us.

Were you offended
by something you saw?

It's just a movie.

I'm the first to understand that.

It's a movie, another invention,
another lie.

You put everybody in it,
but the way you like to see them.

But I know the truth.

The difference is that
I would never have the impudence

to tell everybody the way you do.

Go ahead. Make your movie.

No, I won't.

Indulge yourself. Stroke your ego.

Go make everyone think
you're so wonderful.

What could you ever teach strangers
when you can't

even tell the simplest truth
to the ones closest to you?

To the one who's been
growing old with you?

Come on Luisa. Cut the drama.

You were right to ask me here.

We needed to find closure.

This time, I assure you,
I won't be coming back.

You can go to hell!

Fine, just run, run.

Do what the doctor ordered, run!

Shut up! Throw this ignoramus out.

Fine, now sing.

You may say I'm losing it,
but I have the bills here...

I'll never pay this one, never!
Conocchia, you're losing it.

Saraghina look,
we've got the money.

Saraghina, the Rumba, the Rumba...

Guido, would you please
say something? Please!

What about this one, Guido?

Frankly I preferred the one before.

This one is from Naples.

Can't you see that I'm... stuttering.

When are you coming?
I'm tired of waiting.

Look at me.

Don't leave me alone!
You know it's dangerous.

Don't leave me alone.
You know it's dangerous, darling.

Look over here.

Why aren't you coming now?
Why are you keeping me waiting?

You know it's dangerous
when I have to wait.

Louder, louder!

Countess, walk.

Don't touch me.

This way, this way.

Screen tests Mrs. Grazia, one.

Just bare your shoulders
all of a sudden.

Saraghina, we've got the money.
The money.

Stop. Very good. Was it all right?

Signora, what do you think?

If he won't speak up,
at least we can say something.

Somebody say something!
This is a democracy, right?

You can't hide. We've found you
anyway. How are you?

Hi, I'm Poletti,
from Claudia's press agency.

We met 1 5 years ago.
You might not remember me...

- Look, she's here.
- Where?

Excuse me.

- Claudia.
- How are you?

Well, and you?
You're finally here.

Let's go outside, all right?

This is Caroline, my secretary.

I'd like to talk to you alone.

When do we start shooting?

- Soon, very soon.
- And what's my part?

I'll tell you everything later.

I'm very happy to be working
with you

and I hope I'll be able to help you.

But you must tell me everything.

Where are we going now?

- This way.

You're so beautiful.
I'm at a loss for words.

You make my heart beat
like a school boy's.

You don't believe me, do you?

You inspire such deep respect.

Who do you love?
Claudia, who are you with?

- Who do you care for?
- You.

You arrived just in time, you know.

Why do you smile that way?

I never know if you're judging me,
absolving me, mocking me.

I'm listening. You said you wanted
to tell me about the film.

I don't know anything.

Could you leave everything behind
and start from zero again?

Pick one thing, and one only,
and be absolutely devoted to it?

Make it the reason for your existence,

the thing that contains everything,
that becomes everything,

because your dedication to it
makes it last forever? Could you?

All right, listen.
If I were to say, Claudia...

Where are we going?
I don't know the way...

And what about you? Could you?

The springs must be nearby.
Listen. Turn here.

No, this guy here, he couldn't.

He wants to grab everything,
can't give up a single thing.

He changes his mind every day,

because he's afraid he might
miss the right path.

And he's slowly bleeding to death.
- So this is how the movie ends?

No, this is how it starts.

Then one day he meets the girl
of the spring.

She's one of those girls that
distributes the healing water,

she's beautiful, young and ancient,
a child and a woman already,

authentic and radiant.
There's no doubt that she's his salvation.

You'll be dressed in white
and your hair will be long,

just the way you wear it.

Turn the headlights off.

And then?

Let's leave.

I don't like this place.
It doesn't feel real.

I like it enormously. Isn't that odd?

I didn't get much from your story.

A guy like your character,
who doesn't love anybody,

is not very sympathetic you know.

It's his fault.
What does he expect?

You think I don't know that?

You're a bit of a bore too.

You really can't take the least bit
of criticism.

You're so funny with that big hat,
made up like an old man.

I don't understand. He meets a girl
that can give him a new life

and he pushes her away?

Because he no longer believes in it.

Because he doesn't know
how to love.

Because it isn't true that
a woman can change a man.

Because he doesn't know
how to love.

And above all because I don't feel
like telling another pile of lies.

Because he doesn't know
how to love.

I'm sorry, Claudia, for making you
come all the way here.

You're such a fake.

So, there's no part in the film.

You're right. There isn't.

And there's no film.
There's nothing anywhere.

If it were up to me
we would call it all off now.

Ah, here you are.

Where did you go?
We're starting next week.

Your producer had a great idea.

The greatest cocktail party ever
to launch a movie.

And you know where?
- At the launch pad. Tomorrow afternoon.

Radio, television,
and all the foreign press.

Come on, Guido, we're starting for real.

Catch him!

Let's go. Walk!

I want to go home.

Here, he's here.

Guido, where are you going?
It's over here.

Guido, I'm sure today will be
a beautiful day.

I'm really curious
to finally hear the story...

Don't you take yourself a little
too seriously, Mr. Anselmo?

Leave me alone,
I can walk by myself.

Good luck!

Dottore, here he is!

Calm down!

We've been waiting three days
for you. It's winter already.

Attention, please.

...do you think of pornography
as an art form or...

...is pornography a more
intense form of...

...why don't you ever make a film
about love?

I wish to announce that...

Tomorrow... tomorrow...

What do you think
you can teach us?

Do you really think your life
can be of any interest to others?

He wants to say something.

Answer, say something, go on.

Anything at all! Say anything!

Do it for me!

I promise you...

...this film. And afterward,
what will you live on?

Are you for or against divorce?
Tell me, frankly...

Is that your main problem?

That you can't communicate?
0r is that just a pretext?

Your questions betray
a certain hostility.

I assure you my director
is in great form...

What should I do?
What am I supposed to do?

...he should be treated with respect,

Conocchia, forgive me
if I treated you badly.

You were wonderful,
the best of them all.

He ponders, considers, reflects.

Speak! Answer!

I've paid for your confusion,
your breakdown.

For months I've been paying
for everything.

Quit this film and I'll ruin you.

He'll now be at your disposal.

The press always has been...

Claudia, where are you?
And your spirits, Rossella?

What should I do? Leave you?

You will never be
what you once were.

Will I ever be your wife?
When will you truly marry me?

Luisa, is it really true
that you want a separation?

That you want to leave me?

How can I go on like this
'til the end?

...and what does your wife think?

It's in your right-hand pocket,

So long, Guido.

I put it in your right-hand pocket.

Nobody gets away with this. Buffoon!

0ut of there, out! You coward!

Just a minute, a little moment.
I'm thinking of what to say.

I'm coming... right away!

Such an incurable romantic.

Where are you running, you low-life?

Take it all down, guys!
The film is off.

In two days it all has to be gone.
Start right away.

Tear it all down. Come on!

- Is that it, Dottore?
- Yes, thanks.

So long, guys. See you next time.

Let's hope so.

So long, sailor.

You've made the right choice.

Believe me, today
is a good day for you.

These are tough decisions, I know.

But we intellectuals, and I say we
because I consider you such,

must remain lucid to the bitter end.

This life is so full of confusion already,

that there's no need
to add chaos to chaos.

Losing money is part
of a producer's job.

I congratulate you.
You had no choice.

And he got what he deserved,

for having joined such a frivolous
venture so lightheartedly.

Believe me, no need for remorse.

Destroying is better than creating

when we're not creating those few,
truly necessary things.

But then is there anything
so clear and right

that it deserves to live in this world?

For him, the wrong movie
is only a financial matter.

But for you, at this point,
it could have been the end.

Better to quit
and strew the ground with salt,

as the ancients did,
to purify the battlefields.

In the end what we need is...

some hygiene, some cleanliness,

We're smothered by images,
words and sounds

that have no right to exist, coming
from, and bound for, nothingness.

0f any artist truly worth the name
we should ask nothing

except this act of faith: to learn silence.

Do you remember Mallarm?'s
homage to the white page?

And Rimbaud...
- Guido, wait!

...a poet, my friend, not a movie director.
What was his finest poetry?

We're ready to begin.

His refusal to continue writing
and his departure for Africa.


If we can't have everything,
true perfection is nothingness.

Forgive me for quoting all the time.
But we critics... do what we can.

0ur true mission is... sweeping away
the thousands of miscarriages

that everyday... obscenely...
try to come to the light.

And you would actually dare leave
behind you a whole film,

Iike a cripple who leaves behind
his crooked footprint.

Such a monstrous presumption
to think

that others could benefit from the
squalid catalogue of your mistakes!

And how do you benefit
from stringing together

the tattered pieces of your life?

Your vague memories, the faces of people

that you were never able to love...

What is this sudden happiness
that makes me tremble,

giving me strength, life?

Forgive me, sweet creatures.

I hadn't understood. I didn't know.

It's so natural accepting you,
loving you.

And so simple.

Luisa, I feel I've been freed.

Everything seems so good,
so meaningful.

Everything is true.

I wish I could explain.

But I don't know how to.

So. Everything is confused again,
as it was before.

The lights!

But this confusion is... me.

Not as I'd like to be, but as I am.

I'm not afraid anymore
of telling the truth,

of the things I don't know,
what I'm looking for and haven't found.

This is the only way I can feel alive

and I can look into your faithful
eyes without shame.

Life is a celebration.

Let's live it together!

This is all I can say Luisa,
to you or the others.

Accept me for what I am,
if you want me.

It's the only way we might be able
to find each other.

I don't know if what
you said to me is right.

But I can try if you help me.

Just a minute.
I'll give you the go-ahead.

Now. Go to the curtain.

Draw it.

Everyone come down.

Talk to each other.


Sgulp! I did understand what
you wanted to say, you know.

That you can't do without us.

At what time will you call me tomorrow?
- Fine, fine. Now join the line!


Come, quickly!
Stop fooling around.

Everybody hold hands!
Spread out! All together.


Let's all hold hands!