{Of all lies, art is the least untrue - Flaubert}

Thursday, January 27, 2005

8 1/2

The easiest way to write about 8 1/2 is to say that there is so much to write about it that I can't write. But this will be an 'Easy escape' and will dishonor 8 1/2's art. 8 1/2 is a classic art masterpiece. 8 1/2 is about a movie about a movie about a movie...8 1/2 is a film in a film in a film...These are all become clichés to describe 8 1/2. Let me try to write something about what I felt after 8 1/2.

I have read somewhere "Pearl is the oyster's autobiography" in reference to art produced by any artist ought to be autobiographical. And here is Fellini doing his bit. For me this is a unique experience because I haven't seen anything like it before. This is second Fellini movie I have seen. First was La Strada. There is a basic difference between the two. La Strada is from heart. 8 1/2 is from mind. Not to say that 8 1/2 lacks the soul but it will never make you weep. 8 1/2 works more on intellectual level, you can at best feel elated, elevated, awed by the masterstrokes.

8 1/2 begins with a dream sequence and it remains a collage of imagination and dreams and memories till the end. Its about
Guido Anselmi, a famous Italian director who has just given a big hit and is searching for some plot for the next movie. In all this process of imagination, inspiration and frustration he is facing problems because of the stupid demands and antics of his old cast and crew and his personal life turbulence. At last movie gets underway with practical no script and even Guido seems clueless of what is happening at times.

8 1/2 is not easy watch because of subtitles. The movie is verbose and at times two or more discussions are going on at the same time probably to show how much is going on the mind of director.

8 1/2 never aspires to show the directors as a creative genius not even a person who is going through a low phase. Guido is very human with all the weaknesses but basically creative at the core. There may be many interpretation of the wide varieties of woman (in looks and roles they undertake) shown in the movie. In the simplest understanding they represent the various women in Guido's life and in more complex interpretation as one 'type' of woman cannot singularly 'fulfill' all of man's 'fantasies'. In all these dream and fantasy sequences, there is some sort of truth which makes them non-perfect, and sometimes uninspiring for Guido.

8 1/2 is essentially a closed packed array of such self-indulgent fantasies and dreams with lot of figurative but having enough space for your train of thoughts to run through.

1 comment:

Anurag said...

Whoa! Sounds delicious. DVD please? :)