Screening of the film: Conversation Piece€ 3.00
Luchino Visconti’s penultimate film from 1974 is about two completely opposite worlds living together, not in some any metaphorical coexistence but actually under the same roof. An American professor (Burt Lancaster), passionate about Mozart and the great painters, finds himself have to share his space and time with a ragtag group of noisy and disturbing people: a rich and vulgar countess (Silvana Mangano), her lover (Helmut Berger), the teenage daughter and her boyfriend. Their chaotic invasion to the detriment of the professor and the lacerating doubts it unleashes reflect the torments being felt in Italy after 1968. The character of the professor is inspired by the great English literature scholar, Mario Praz, whose book Conversation Pieces describes a “Survey of the Informal Group Portrait”. Introduced by Paola Jacobbi.
Paola Jacobbi, in a career spanning over 30 years, journalist and film critic has worked for magazines Epoca, Panorama, Gioia andCiak as well as for the TV channel Canale 5 and Vanity Fair, among others. At the moment she is Entertainment Editor at Glamour. In 2013 she published her first novel, Tu sai chi sono io (Bompiani).
Paola Jacobbi & i Dialoghi
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Luchino Visconti (1906-1976), the film and theatre director and screenwriter was adored while alive and turned into a cult figure after his death. He is considered as one of the most influential figures in world cinema. After starting as assistant to Jean Renoir, his directorial debut came in 1942 with Obsession, followed by La terra trema, held to be of a masterpiece of Neorealism. Senso, presented at the Venice Film Festival in 1954 amidst considerable controversy, marked the change to a style reminiscent of melodrama, like Rocco and His Brothers. With The Leopard, his best-known film, Visconti enjoyed tremendous success with audiences and won the Palm d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1963. He would go on to direct the so-called “German trilogy”, comprising The Damned (1969), Death in Venice (1971) and Ludwig (1973). His final films were Conversation Piece and L’innocente (1976), presented posthumously at Cannes.