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L'Eclisse (Criterion Collection) (1962)

Cast: Monica Vitti, Monica Vitti, Alain Delon, more...
Director: Michelangelo Antonioni, Michelangelo Antonioni
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Studio: Criterion
Genre: Drama, Foreign, Italy, Criterion Collection
Languages: Italian
Subtitles: English
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In this challenging drama by Michelangelo Antonioni, his characteristic long, significant periods of silence punctuate the message that people just cannot seem to communicate with each other. Capping off Antonioni's previous two films (L'avventura and La Notte) in much the same style, this tale involves a woman, Vittoria (Monica Vitti), who has just suffered the break-up of an imperfect relationship with a staunch intellectual (Francisco Rabal). Piero (Alain Delon), a stockbroker, casts his romantic gaze in Vittoria's direction and the woman gradually relents and they begin a tentative affair. There is much to appreciate in this man who is not overly intellectual and is blessedly free of complications, and the same can be said of Vittoria. Yet their innermost fears play upon both of them in ways that go against an honest expression of their love -- and against a lasting relationship. ~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Ratings

L'Eclisse (Criterion Collection) (1962)
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7.72 (68 votes)
L'Eclisse (Criterion Collection) (Bonus Disc) (1962)
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6.92 (12 votes)

GreenCine Member Reviews

Worthy but dated by SBarnett August 6, 2006 - 8:52 AM PDT
The movement in this film is generated by the characters' psychology, not by events. There is basically no story. This isn't a problem, because the acting is so good, and Antonioni's long, deliberate shots are so telling, that you find yourself hooked. It's a film of many memorable scenes, like those in the stock exchange and characters walking alone in empty streets, dwarfed by sterile modern apartment blocks. It's also largely a film of Monica Vitti. Her face is amazingly changeable, her body language so eloquent. One unforgettable scene has her stepping out of a cab and gesturing to someone honking their horn for her to hurry--an arch of the eyes, a purse of the lips, a little pressing gesture of the hands--so Roman, and so Vitti. Like Jack Nicholson says in the audio commentary to The Passenger, "Antonioni has an eye for beautiful women." And more than an eye--a mind. By the end of the film, you feel her frustration and boredom and loneliness and yearning almost physically, you want her to burst out, run away. That said, enough of the film feels dated now--the scene where Vitti is "playing Negroes," the urban alienation, the ending--to make this less than Antonioni's best. If you've never seen an Antonioni film, watch L'Avventura instead.

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