This art film has no conventional dialog between the main characters. This tells a strangely compelling story of two women in a suburban home who are listening to radio news broadcasts about a missing child in their area.
Walter is told by his boss, Sara, to deliver an urgent letter to Henri de Corinthe. On the way he finds a beautiful woman he had been eying in a nightclub, lying in the road, bound up. He ... See full summary »
Luchino Visconti's last film based on a novella by Gabrielle d'Annunzio is a haunting account of aristocratic chauvinism and sexual double standards in turn of the century Italy. Giannini as the psichotic husband whose lust cannot be satisfied. Antonelli as his sensitive and tormented wife and O'Neil as cunning possesive mistress.Written by
Alex Asp <email@example.com>
I saw "L' Innocent" in the mid-eighties, at at time when I was discovering a lot of Visconti's films from his last period ("Death in Venice"--my favorite--, "The Damned," and "Conversation Piece") It made a very favorable impression then; but I do agree with the viewer who dwelt on the languid pace of the film, highlighted by the sensuous musical score. What saddens me is that not one of the viewers commenting on the film --I have little to add regarding the plot, and am trying to avoid spoilers-has remarked that it is based on a novel by Gabriele D'Annunzio (né Gaetano Raspagnetta), the most popular and yet one of the most aristocratic "fin-de-siecle" writers in turn-of-the century Italy. Visconti, the majority of whose films are based on European 19th and 20th century novels, was extremely faithful to D'Annunzio' book, down to the morbidest details. D'Annunzio was a sensual man and what was regarded in his day as a "decadent" poet and novelist. His scenarios were usually luxurious, his characters were often relentless pleasure-seekers, albeit dissatisfied in their passionate search for the ultimate fulfillment of the senses. Tullio, the character so intensely played by Giancarlo Giannini, is a would-be Nietschean "superman", beyond good and evil, as "L'Innocent'(the novel) was inspired by the Italian poet's readings of the German philosopher.
Despite the slow pace of the film, I believe "L'Innocent' to be one of its director's most characteristic achievements. The glowing beauty of its female stars (fragile, yet alluring Jennifer O'Neill and earthy Laura Antonelli)and Giancarlo Giannini's seething intensity alone make this movie a worthwhile experience for cinema lovers who favor art over technology and substance over mindless, noisy violence.
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