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Italy, 1988 (MIFF 1990, Spotlight Bertolucci)

Director: Giuseppe Bertolucci

Dario, a psychologist working in the public health system, lives an uneventful day-to-day routine comprising his work, his fiancee, his future inlaws.

One day he meets Mario, his one-time high-school mate. They celebrate their meeting in a bar, but just as they are having a drink Mario suddenly feels ill and falls in a heap, dead from a heart-attack. The newly rediscovered acquaintance draws his last breath in Dario's arms.

Dario now inherits a disturbing situation, namely Mario's widow, Anne, once Dario's own sweet-heart, and Mario's lover, Esther, a young and ingenuous girl. From this point on, Dario's life changes radically. He is drawn into a whirlwind of feelings and all his various relationships go through a terrible crisis.

Through this stormy chain of events and personalities, Dario comes to confront and question the purpose of his own profession, the meaning of his own authoritative science. Bertolucci's continuing preoccupation with feminine sensibilities is here enhanced by a strong, vibrant, intriguing psychodrama, graced by impressive performances from the mostly female cast.

Giuseppe Bertolucci
Now fully recognised as a major directorial force in Italian and international cinema, Giuseppe Bertolucci, like his celebrated brother Bernardo, was born in Parma, just over forty years ago. The son of a poet, Attilio, Giuseppe practised this literary art form throughout his youth in a family atmosphere surrounded by books, art and prestigious friends.

In 1970 he was an assistant director on The Spider's Stratagem made by brother Bernardo. Later he co-scripted both 1900 (1977) and La Luna (1979). He began directing his own films in 1971 including a number of television productions. His feature films include Berlinguer, ti voglio bene (1977), Oggetti Smarriti (1981), Segreti, Segreti (1985, MFF '86), Tuttobenigni (1986), Strana la Vita (1988), I Cammelli (1988) and Amori in Corso (1989).

See also...


Typical of Giuseppe Bertolucci's best previous efforts (An Italian Woman, Secrets, Secrets) this quirky modern fable exudes an idiosyncratic, offbeat charm. The scenario, which features a pleasing ... More »


In Love In Progress, Giuseppe Bertolucci has drawn a delightfully amusing portrait of the young. As in his previous films, Bertolucci's facility in creating credible and fascinating women characters ... More »


Generally acclaimed as the best — and most important — Italian film of the year. SECRETS, SECRETS confirms the talent of ... Giuseppe Bertolucci (younger brother of Bernardo and co-writer ... More »

My Bow Breathing

An archer uses her skill and discipline with the bow and arrow to extract a violent revenge on those who wronged her. ... D/S Enrico Maria Artale P Elisabetta Bruscolini L Italian w/English subtitles ... More »


A long-time soccer club manager (played by the late, great Ugo Tognazzi) is retrenched, then recatled to rescue a poorly performing team. With his demeanour of a man in a hurry, fast-talking ... More »


Three different stories [The Trip, Estrellita Goes To New York and Two Don Giovannis) are blended into one original concept signed by Mario Martone. director of the theatrical group Falso Movimento ... More »

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