LA GRANDE BELLEZZA (2013) - CLE Italian Film Fest / Joey's Italian Bistro

La grande bellezza (2013)

The Great Beauty

The Cedar Lee Theater

Thursday, September 25th at 7:30 p.m.

Italy – Paolo Sorrentino

In Italian with subtitles

Journalist Jep Gambardella (the dazzling Toni Servillo, Il divo and Gomorrah) has charmed and seduced his way through the lavish nightlife of Rome for decades. Since the legendary success of his one and only novel, he has been a permanent fixture in the city's literary and social circles, but when his sixty-fifth birthday coincides with a shock from the past, Jep finds himself unexpectedly taking stock of his life, turning his cutting wit on himself and his contemporaries, and looking past theextravagant nightclubs, parties, and cafés to find Rome in all its glory: a timeless landscape of absurd, exquisite beauty. (c) Janus

Unrated, 2 hr. 22 min.

DramaComedy

Directed By: Paolo Sorrentino

Written By: Paolo Sorrentino

Best Foreign Language Film Oscar Winner

Thursday, September 25th at 7:30 p.m.


THE GREAT BEAUTY

LA GRANDE BELLEZZA (2013)

Italy, 2013, Paolo Sorrentino

In Italian with subtitles

The acclaimed new movie from the director of last year's Cinematheque hit This Must Be the Place won 2013 European Film Awards for Best Film, Director, and Actor! The Great Beauty finds filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino back in his native Italy, and working again with his chameleonic Il Divo star, Toni Servillo.

Here Servillo loses himself in the role of Jep Gambardella, a one-time literary lion turned jaded journalist in Rome, who squanders his life partying with the super rich and being seen with celebrities. But now this world-weary cynic and sensualist senses the emptiness of his existence, so scours his life for something authentic.

This flamboyant La Dolce Vita update is intoxicatingly rendered with an ever-roaming (Rome-ing?) camera and wall-to-wall music. It’s a vibrantly colored x-ray that reveals Berlusconi's Italy to be stylish and seductive, but also superficial and soulless. "A fantastic journey around contemporary Rome and a riot of lush imagery juggling past and present, sacred and profane, gorgeous and grotesque." -NPR.

WHO: Ciné Arts Cleveland! and Music Cleveland! with The Italian Language Group

WHAT: La grande bellezza (2013)

WHEN: Thursday, September 25th at 7:30 p.m.

WHERE:  Cedar Lee Theater

DINNER: 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Joey’s Italian Bistro, a 4 minute walk from the theater - in the former Jimmy O'Neil's Irish Bar, 2195 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights 44118

I suggest arrival around 5 p.m. to get an early spot in the queue.  

TICKETS:  All tickets sold in ADVANCE - Please mention that you are a Ciné Arts Cleveland! member when orderingfor this festival that sells out early each year.  For films tickets are ($10) and before film buffet dinners ($20 including tax, gratuity and beverage).  To order information please call:[masked]

The Festival benefits the Cleveland Italian Cultural Gardens and their many fine programs including the annual free Opera in the Italian Gardens event we have attended so many times.

Tickets on sale NOW and selling fast!  All tickets sold in ADVANCE for this festival that sells out early each year.  For films tickets are ($10) and before film buffet dinners ($20 including tax, gratuity and beverage).  To order information please call:[masked]

The films promise moviegoers comedy, drama and romance.  All films are Thursday evenings screening at promptly at 7:30 p.m.  There is a dinner before each film 5:30 – 7 p.m.   All tickets sold in advance for the film festival that sells out early each year.  For films tickets ($10) and before film buffet dinners ($20 including: tax, gratuity and beverage) and information please call:[masked]

PARKING: Paid Parking in the rear lot and garage is now 24 X 7, so bring a couple of quarters.  Credit cards work in the garage but at times, the line to pay can delay your arrival at the show.  Plan on an early arrival.  Many members park at a free city parking lot on Edgewood Road at the corner of Cedar, one block west of Lee Road.

WHERE TO MEET:  Meet at the restaurant or outside the theater entrance.  There will be a crowd so we will not wait for you.  We will enter the auditorium at about 6:45 p.m.  You can look for the group inside the theater.  DO NOT ARRIVE LATE!  This will be well attended so it is advisable to arrive early.  We will sit in the upper level, left (facing screen) which is the best spot for the Cedar Lee main auditorium’s off kilter screen.

The flick is 142 minutes (2 and ½ hours), so expect to be out around 10 p.m.  You may also meet us afterward outside the entrance door.  If you RSVP, we will wait for you.  If you do not have a photo posted, you will have to find us.

It’s a little late for a post-film discussion but if you are a night owl we’re open to suggestions.


PLOT

Journalist Jep Gambardella has charmed and seduced his way through the lavish nightlife of Rome for decades. Since the legendary success of his one and only novel, he has been a permanent fixture in the city's literary and social circles, but when his sixty-fifth birthday coincides with a shock from the past, Jep finds himself unexpectedly taking stock of his life, turning his cutting wit on himself and his contemporaries, and looking past the extravagant nightclubs, parties, and cafés to find Rome in all its glory: a timeless landscape of absurd, exquisite beauty. Written byJon Mulvaney

Here is a long clip on YouTube which is probably an illegal pirated copy - so much so that it has been blocked :( 

Wikipedia – (click here)

The  web site is extraordinary (click here)

Critics love it –

Rotten Tomatoes – 93-percent Fresh!  (click here)


Dazzling decadence permeates one of the year’s best films, 'The Great Beauty' (A)

By CHRIS VOGNAR

Movie Critic

[masked]

Published: 12 December[masked]:21 PM

13 December 2013

The title of The Great Beauty isn’t meant to describe the movie itself, but it still does. This is a film of visual rapture, a dose of aesthetic bliss that reminds us what kind of spell the medium can cast in the right hands.

Those hands belong to Paolo Sorrentino, an Italian maestro who has earned comparison to the Italian maestro Federico Fellini. It’s easy to see why. Like La Dolce Vita, The Great Beauty concerns an underachieving lifestyle journalist (the wonderful Toni Servillo) stewing in the long-simmering malaise of a spiritually decaying Rome. Like 8½, Sorrentino’s film floats ecstatically on a sea of free-associative and surreal thoughts and images. If you seek the next Life Is Beautiful or Il Postino, look elsewhere.

The camera zooms and hovers, retreats and mercilessly observes as Servillo’s Jep Gambardella drinks with his hyperarticulate friends and observes one ridiculous but bracing art concept after another. Jep moved to Rome 40 years ago, wrote one well-received novella and then lived out a hollow dream of lording over Rome’s night life. With his prominent nose, thin lips and sad, mischievous eyes, Servillo looks a little like a clown surprised to find his face slowly melting.


The Great Beauty can be read as an indictment of former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s frivolous Italy, or, on a more expansive level, a story of empire’s decline (Jep’s luxury apartment offers a view of the Roman Colosseum’s remains). Sorrentino pulls off a shrewd paradox. His portrait of empty decadence insists that we be seduced by the same sensations that made Jep a slave to his baser instincts.

That’s all well and good, but you could watch The Great Beauty with the sound turned down and come away dazzled. In the middle of asking yourself “How did he get that shot?” you’re stopped short by the next jaw-dropper, and the next. Lucky Jep. If only we could all stumble toward grace with this sort of visual accompaniment.

Is Sorrentino a bit of a showoff? Sure. He’s also a sensualist of the highest order. Go ahead. Soak up theBeauty. It’s one of the best films of the year.

Follow Chris Vognar on Twitter at @chrisvognar.


THE GREAT BEAUTY

Directed by Paolo Sorrentino. Not rated (language, drugs, nudity, sexual content). In Italian, Spanish, Japanese and Chinese with English subtitles. 142 mins.

And here is a review from an audience member in Ireland:

A Masterpiece.

Author: Martin Bradley ([masked]) from Derry, Ireland
14 September 2013

Italian cinema is, at last, on a roll again. Perhaps not in the same way as when Rossellini, Visconti, Fellini and De Sica were batting masterpiece after masterpiece into the arena but maybe more prodigiously than at any time since the young Olmi and young Bertolucci were setting the screen alight. In recent years we have had Michelangelo Frammartino's "Le Quattro Volte", Gianni De Gregorio's sublimely gentle comedies "Mid-August Lunch" and "The Salt of Life" and, perhaps best of all, the films of Paolo Sorrentino whose "The Consequences of Love", "The Family Friend" and "Il Divo" were highly original and sufficiently off-the-wall to invite comparisons with Fellini. His one venture into English-language cinema, "This Must be the Place", met with a largely hostile reception from critics who accused him of being self-indulgent but I found the film to be gorgeous and quirky and just what I would have expected from so idiosyncratic a talent. And now we have "The Great Beauty", a return to Italy and a return to, what his critics might see as, earlier form.

This film, too, has been compared to Fellini which is entirely appropriate as this is a "La Dolce Vita" for the 21st century. You can even imagine the film's central character, Jeb, as Marcello, older if hardly wiser and for Sorrentino nothing much has changed. But if this is Sorrentino in Fellini mode it's just as close to the beauty and spectacle of "Amarcord" or, more appropriately, "Juliet of the Spirits". Once again the lead is taken by Toni Servillo, who was Sorrentino's Andreotti in "Il Divo" and once again he confirms his position as one of the cinema's finest actors, heading a truly superb ensemble cast.

As in "La Dolce Vita" there is no real 'story' but rather a series of episodes in the life of Jeb in the days following his 65th birthday, (his birthday party is the first of the film's many great sequences). If there is a theme it's Jeb's increasing disillusionment with the lifestyle he has associated himself with over the years, a lifestyle he is very reluctant to give up, no matter how pragmatically he views it. He is a man who has had many women but no real relationship to speak of, (the early love of his life married someone else). He meets the daughter of an old friend, a 42 year old stripper with a drug habit, and they strike up a relationship of sorts though when they go to bed together he is happy when they don't have sex. He gets sustenance from his friends although he can be cutting and abrasive in their presence. It seems as it is they, and not money or power, which keeps him going.

This is a magnificent movie, the kind of film that you know is being composed, frame by gorgeous frame, by a master film-maker. It is a breathtaking melange of sound and images, of great performances and superlative dialogue that draws you in and holds you from its first shot to its last. Some directors open their films with great tracking shots but Sorrentino saves his to the end, up, over and under the bridges of the Tiber as the final credits roll. Don't leave the cinema to the very last second.

The Cleveland Italian Film Festival is the first independent film festival in Northern Ohio to exclusively showcase Italian award winning films in a professional theatre setting and has sold out every year since its inception.

The Cleveland Italian Film Festival 2014, showcasing award winning films from Italy, opens September 18th and runs through October 9th at the Cedar Lee Theater in Cleveland Heights, the Atlas Cinemas Eastgate in Mayfield Heights. and the Capitol Theatre on the near west side in the Detroit Shoreway Arts District.

WHAT:  Cleveland Italian Film Festival 2014

WHEN:  Thursday Evenings - The Cleveland Italian Film Festival, showcasing award winning films from Italy, opens September 18th and runs through October 9th at the Cedar Lee Theater in Cleveland Heights, the Atlas Cinemas Eastgate in Mayfield Hts. and the Capitol Theatre in Detroit Shoreway Arts District.

The films promise moviegoers comedy, drama and romance.  All films are Thursday evenings at 7:30 pm.  There is a film festival dinner before each screening from 5:30 – 7 pm.  The queue for the restaurant starts around 5 p.m. so early arrival gets the best table.

The Festival benefits the Cleveland Italian Cultural Gardens and their many fine programs including the annual free Opera in the Italian Gardens event we have attended so many times.

Tickets on sale NOW and selling fast!  All tickets sold in ADVANCE for this festival that sells out early each year.  For films tickets are ($10) and before film buffet dinners ($20 including tax, gratuity and beverage).  To order information please call:[masked]

The films promise moviegoers comedy, drama and romance.  All films are Thursday evenings screening at promptly at 7:30 p.m.  There is a dinner before each film 5:30 – 7 p.m.   All tickets sold in advance for the film festival that sells out early each year.  For films tickets ($10) and before film buffet dinners ($20 including: tax, gratuity and beverage) and information please call:[masked]

CIFF Facebook page (click here)  

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Also, paid members of Music Cleveland! (click here) are entitled to a complementary membership in Ciné Arts Cleveland! A twofer – what a deal!

Ciné Arts Cleveland! is Theater & Performance Art · Art · Classic Films · Italian Film · Film · Cinema and Films · British Film · British Movies · Film Festivals · Foreign Films · Movies/Dinner · Independent Film · Arts and Entertainment · Books and Movies Discussions

 

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