Beyond Passions: Federico Fellini

Programmed by Daniel Frankel

This series was made possible with the support of Luce Cinecittà.


2015-01-07 @ 7:00 PM 9:00 PM

The White Sheik

(Federico Fellini, 1952) · Newlyweds Ivan and Wanda arrive in Rome for their honeymoon and to meet Ivan's prissy family. However, her eyes are set on the White Sheik – the matinee idol of fumetti (photographed cartoon-strip romances). Wanda's disillusionment with the cavalier Sheik is set against Ivan's comic attempts to explain his wife's absence to his disgruntled relatives. Fellini's first solo feature is a satiric sketch, foreshadowing his signature later depictions of Rome.

runtime: 83 min format: 35mm
Print courtesy of Luce Cinecittà.


2015-01-14 @ 7:00 PM 9:15 PM

I Vitelloni

(Federico Fellini, 1953) · Ladies, watch out! The Vitelloni are coming to town. These goodfellas are the wastrels of an unnamed beach town in the Adriatic not unlike Fellini's own hometown of Rimini. Compassionately chronicling a year in the life of a provincial post-adolescent quintet, Fellini perfectly balances the street humor of the 1950s with a carefree gaiety and melancholy. Perhaps the most autobiographical of his films, it also works to comment on social change of the period.

runtime: 104 min format: 35mm


2015-01-21 @ 7:00 PM

Il Bidone

(Federico Fellini, 1955) · This series eschews La Strada and Nights of Cabiria in favor of the middle entry of Fellini's loneliness trilogy: Il Bidone. Often neglected amongst those three films, this is a throwback to Fellini's Neorealist tendencies and his typical themes. A heartbreaking portrait of redemption and deception, Il Bidone follows a trio of swindlers: the aging leader Augusto and his two accomplices who wish they were artists instead: Picasso and Roberto.

runtime: 109 min format: 35mm


2015-01-28 @ 6:00 PM 9:30 PM

La Dolce Vita

(Federico Fellini, 1960) · The turn of the 1960s: JFK is elected president of the U.S., Rome hosts the Olympics, and Fellini creates La Dolce Vita. From the film's opening image, his symbolism is clear: a statue of Jesus suspended from a helicopter glides over a Roman rooftop of nude sunbathers. Condemned by the Catholic Church, "the sweet life" reveals elaborate escapades and extensive set pieces that leave you breathless, questioning the worth of a lifestyle without values.

runtime: 180 min format: 35mm


2015-02-04 @ 7:00 PM 9:00 PM

I Clowns

(Federico Fellini, 1970) · This docu-comedy is full of evocative imagery of clown routines, merging Fellini's great admiration for the circus with his surrealist tendencies. Fellini jests with the audience in his role as a pretentious documentary filmmaker revisiting his childhood obsession with clowning. He maintains the levity of clowning and the objectivism of documentary, delving into his past memories. The everyday becomes extraordinary and the ridiculous becomes ordinary.

runtime: 92 min format: 35mm
Print courtesy of Luce Cinecittà.


2015-02-11 @ 7:00 PM 9:45 PM

(Federico Fellini, 1963) · International film audiences rapturously awaited Fellini's follow-up to the remarkable, scandalous success of La Dolce Vita. Fellini battled his "director's block" by delivering a work of metafictional memory that navigates seamlessly between fantasy and reality. was a major stylistic departure from his previous Neorealist work, focusing instead on revealing the interior mechanics of his mind. The best film ever made about filmmaking.

runtime: 138 min format: 35mm


2015-02-18 @ 7:00 PM 9:45 PM

Juliet of the Spirits

(Federico Fellini, 1965) · Fellini's first feature-length foray into color film places his real wife, Giulietta Masina, in a feminine of sorts. Masina is Juliet, a middle-aged housewife who has been betrayed by her husband and embarks on a path of Jungian individuation. Her dreams and memories erupt in her daily life manifesting themselves in visions of Eastern and the exploits of her sexually liberated neighbor Suzy. One of Fellini's most surreal and haunting films.

runtime: 137 min format: 35mm
Print courtesy of Luce Cinecittà.


2015-02-25 @ 7:00 PM


(Federico Fellini, 1976) · Fellini debunks the literary myth of Casanova by reimagining him as the legendary lover who is unable to love. "Donaldino" Sutherland portrays the virile hero as a cavalier bed-hopper beyond empathy, but Fellini's recognition of himself within the lothario manifested itself into pure disdain for the cavalier character of Casanova and Sutherland himself. Sutherland was perfect for the role, Fellini said, as he was "a big sperm-full waxwork with the eyes of a masturbator."

runtime: 155 min format: 35mm


2015-03-04 @ 7:00 PM 9:30 PM


(Federico Fellini, 1973) · A semi-autobiographical coming-of-age tale set in 1930s Fascist Italy, Amarcord tells the tale of Titta, a young boy growing up in the village of Borgo San Giuliano. Fellini uses Titta's tale to paint a damning portrait both of Mussolini's regime and the Catholic Church, arguing that both institutions tended to ease the public into a "perpetual adolescence," in which perverse, ludicrous sexual fantasies stand in for any genuine growth.

runtime: 123 min format: 35mm


2015-03-11 @ 7:00 PM 9:15 PM


(Federico Fellini, 1987) · The conceit of Fellini's exercise in reflexive mockumentary echoes the success of . A Japanese TV crew is visiting the director in Rome to follow preparations on Fellini's next venture: a fake adaptation of Franz Kafka's Amerika. Within a whirlwind of a day, the visiting crew and Fellini's own entourage are devoured by the director's ceaseless activity. Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg reappear as themselves in a poignant ode to Fellini's heyday.

runtime: 105 min format: 35mm


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