The Great Beauty


A cinematic stroll through one man's melancholy

Two parts loving tribute, to one part post-modern pastiche, Paolo Sorrentino’s ravishing love letter to La Dolce Vita succeeds because of how plainly it bears its own director’s stamp.

The vein of beguiling strangeness that ran through Sorrentino’s This Must Be The Place is tapped again in the story of fading playboy Jep (Toni Servillo), whose fixation on remaining young and relevant is stirred into something deeper by a startling loss.

It’s overindulgent in length and, at times, style, but Jep’s sumptuously shot nostalgic odyssey through parties, trysts and memories demands to be savoured, not inhaled.

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