Monday, June 24, 2013

359. L'Avventura

The Adventure
Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni

Moving right along with the 1960s, we come to another weird film that is pretty much about two terrible people with no resolution.  However, it is a very pretty movie so I will not bitch too long about it.

Anna and her boyfriend, Sandro, decide to go yachting cruise in the Mediterranean.  They bring along a few wealthy couples and their friend, Claudia.  Anna goes missing on one of the islands they visit.  Claudia and Sandro spend about five minutes looking for her before they start sleeping together. Ah, romance.

So the story line may teeter on the edge of absurdity, but there are a few interesting things about this film that I think made it worth my while.  First, like I said, the movie is absolutely gorgeous.  Of course, it is hard to make the Mediterranean Islands look unappealing, so I suppose this mention might be a bit of a give away.  Still, it was a beautiful movie to watch.

Secondly, the ambiguity of the ending was quite thought provoking; in other hands, it might have been extremely frustrating.  Since we are a spoiler free zone, I will not say anything else about it.

So worth a watch but certainly not a stand out film.

RATING: **---

Interesting Facts:

Rated as the second greatest film of all time in Sight and Sound Magazine.

Booed at the Cannes Film Festival.


  1. When I watched this I did not understand Antonioni's particular way on making movies, so, frankly, I hated it. After three of his movies I think I get what he is driving at and what actually matters in his movies. That helps a lot and I am not as negative about L'Avventura as I used to be. Still, this is my least favourite of his three movies in the trilogy.

  2. I think L'Eclisse is the one that worked best for me, probably because by then I understood what he was doing.

  3. The scene where Monica Vitti is being gazed by 50+ men must have been really intimidating for the actress herself, no matter what her character had committed.

  4. The more I think about this, the more I like it.

    Anna and Claudia are the same person in some sense, but not in the obvious, literal way of Black Swan. When Anna hands her symbolic blouse to Claudia, she becomes her and in effect disappears. (Or did she just change her behaviour and let another side of herself come to the fore?)

    And so Sandro transfers his affections to her. Note the bit where they're in the shop asking a couple who saw her. The man who thought she was sexy but unobtainable says she was a brunette (a la Anna), the wife who thought she was free and something to worry about says she was blonde (a la Claudia). Were they ever separate people, in the first place? Very early on when Anna and Sandro get jiggy with it, she is unemotional and can't open up. Meanwhile, outside, relaxed Claudia without these inhibitions tries to see in but they block her out with the curtains.

    Or is the film really about her in the first place? Whenever Sandro tries to get into a church, he finds it locked and empty. God's house is closed to him. He takes out his anger on an artist's drawing of a church by knocking ink all over it. And then at the end, after he has sinned against Claudia, she poses like the virgin Mary and confers forgiveness upon him as he weeps.