Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Original title: Il Deserto Rosso
Italy/France, 1964. Film Duemila, Federiz, Francoriz Production. Screenplay by Michelangelo Antonioni, Tonino Guerra. Cinematography by Carlo Di Palma. Produced by Tonino Cervi, Angelo Rizzoli. Music by Giovanni Fusco, Vittorio Gelmetti. Production Design by Piero Poletto. Costume Design by Gitt Magrini. Film Editing by Eraldo Da Roma.
More art house brilliance from Michelangelo Antonioni, here making his first film in colour. Monica Vitti stars as a dillusioned young wife and mother who, following a car accident, wanders about the industrial landscape of her husband’s factory in search of what seems to have gone missing from her life. It doesn’t have the marvelous thrust to its opening that L’Avventura‘s missing girl plot had, leaving you with an enjoyably glacial moody drama that keeps you interested but never convinces you why you should be watching it in the first place. Still, it has its memorable moments, and Antonioni’s tastefully elegant framing is always worth the watch. Also stars an oddly cast but effective Richard Harris.
The Criterion Collection: #522
Venice Film Festival Award: Golden Lion