|Starring:||Giancarlo Giannini, Jennifer O'Neill, Laura Antonelli|
|Genres:||Drama, World Cinema|
|Run time:||2 hours 4 minutes|
|Rental release:||27 Sep 2004|
Most helpful review
Gorgeous, sumpteous melodramaBy Zamy (552 reviews) from London , 16 May 2005
[Highly rated reviewer]This was Visconti's last film and he died before its release in 1976. An exraordinary film it shows Visconti at the height of his powers and equal credit must go to the ravishing cinematography of Pasqualino de Santis. I don't want to reveal any of the plot except to say that the hero, Hermile,is a very unpleasant character. For some viewers this may be hard to take. I can only say that the priviledged Italian aristocracy at the end of the 19th century must have produced many such men. This fabulous, under-rated masterwork deserves a wider audience. Let's hope that happens with this dvd release.
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Superb, intense and subtleBy erp (67 reviews) from Manchester , 06 May 2012
[Highly rated reviewer]I found this a completely gripping and absorbing film - one that really had me almost shouting at the characters or getting out of my chair to try to stop things happening.
It has the kind of intensity that goes with melodrama - extreme situations and events, extreme contrasts of emotion, violent contrasts between good and evil - and also the different, subtler intensity that comes from superb acting by characters who really do seem to be living their parts and whose fates and states of mind one really cares about.
I talked about violent contrasts between good and evil, but in a way the more compelling contrast is between good and perversity. You're kept on the edge of your seat by Tullio because he isn't only brutal and egotistical; he's also a tormented and divided man, sophisticated and capable of real tenderness as well as arrogant thuggery, priding himself on his freedom from superstition and illusion, his sense of complete self-mastery and at the same time a prey to his own passions and to his pride in the opinion of others. He's the aristocrat who has everything, carelessly abundant wealth, status, intelligence and athletic talent, but whose life is fundamentally purposeless and who often seems like a spoilt child as a result.
The film's ravishing beauty is a feast for the eye but it heightens the sense of perversity and waste, and also (because nearly all the scenes are indoors) creates a powerful sense of claustrophobia. In the end all the characters seem pretty trapped. Behind the utterly absorbing story-telling and the concentration on the fate of a few individuals we care about it's also a powerful condemnation of the corruptions of wealth and power, rooted in late nineteenth and early twentieth century Italy but relevant to our divided society today.
Women in Visconti's last Film ...By Katya1 (53 reviews) , 07 Oct 2011
[Highly rated reviewer]Interesting that this was Visconti's last film at the age of 69. Apart from obvious themes of infidelity and jealousy, it also looks at atheism as a justification for Tullio's moral transgressions.
Thinking about the contemporaneous background of Italian feminist protests in 1976 when this film was released, it explores the role of women in a 19th century Italian Catholic aristocratic society: the wife, the mistress, the mother, the nurse-maid ... and talks about the idea of woman as an equal partner in a relationship.
Sumptuous costumes, gorgeous interiors, lavish vases of flowers and artworks, for me the best shots in the film are those when Tullio views his wife on the Villa's terrace walkway ... Fabulous casting of Laura Antonella as Giuliana.
Textbook Dramatic IronyBy Seedyvee (207 reviews) from Grantham , 10 Apr 2011This film produces strong dramatic continuity with barely a raised voice, so effectively understated is the subject treated with largely expression, silence and background sound. An amoralistic playboy Italian aristocrat of the 19th century finds the world rebound on himself when he finds himself duped by his hitherto longsuffering and faithful wife with tragic consequences. The photography is excellent with soft yet well-focused colour though you have to look through a letter-box throughout incurring neckache incessantly nodding reading the subtitles beneath!
L'Innocente by Lucino ViscontiBy a customer from N19 , 03 Feb 2011I have seen three Visconte films - Death in Venice, The Leopard, and this one. His films combine an amazing stateliness of pace with an intensity of emotion that keeps the watcher totally involved throughout. The reason I think is that he deals with human emotion at its most extreme: pride, jealousy, possessive love, passion for one's country or one's class, lust. There is always tragedy and mournful reflection on the passing of time and happiness. And yet in spite of this, visually his films are so full, so exciting, so gorgeous that one comes back for more.
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Lavish historical dramaBy a customer from Billericay , 27 Mar 2010A good film by Visconti about infidelity and the double standards which existed for men and women at the end of the nineteenth century. Some fine performances from the cast and lavish sets/scenery/costumes. Well worth watching.