You’ll want to visit Rome after watching The Great Beauty. Italy’s capital is the beauty in question and its inhabitants are the beasts, party-hardened socialites that swirl chaotically around a calm centre, Toni Servillo’s Jep. Wry and unflappable he owns this film, passing comment on his friends’ sins with a frown of his world-weary face.
Sorrentino’s direction is the perfect combination of beautiful visuals and elegant camera moves, every shot also serving its narrative purpose with misleading simplicity. He lightens the film with touches of surrealism and spirituality, the latter interrogated with Jep’s gentle charm.
TL;DR: A wander through visceral vignettes of excess with a tender human heart. Amidst the sympathetic satire is a memorable tale of lost love and unfulfilled dreams. The most beautiful film of the year, believe it or not.
CAST: Toni Servillo, Carlo Verdone, Sabrina Ferilli, Carlo Buccirosso, Iaia Forte
DIRECTOR: Paolo Sorrentino
WRITER: Paolo Sorrentino, Umberto Contarello
SYNOPSIS: Jep Gembardella, writer and socialite, has charmed the Roman nightlife for years, but news from his past prompts a change in attitude.
Released on DVD, 13 January 2014