The Nights of Cabiria (Le Notti di Cabiria)


(out of 5)

The best film from Fellini’s pre-Dolce Vita career is this scintillating comedy-drama that was the basis for the less impressive musical Sweet Charity. Cabiria (, in the best role of her career) is a prostitute with a hopeful heart who keeps putting her faith in human nature, and subsequently keeps getting disappointed. After one boyfriend leaves her in the dust and takes her purse, she goes home to resume life before falling in love again with someone new.  The nights she experiences and the heartbreaks she keeps encountering are beautifully recorded by Fellini’s sensitive camera and his excellent screenplay, coming to a terrific climax at a remarkable sequence on a religious pilgrimage.  There is no better an example of gritty realism being perfectly blended with starry-eyed fantasy.


Italy/France, 1957

Directed by 

Story by Federico Fellini, , , Screenplay by Federico Fellini, Ennio Flaiano, Tullio Pinelli, , based on the novel by

Cinematography by

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by Piero Gherardi

Film Editing by

Film Festivals:  Cannes 1957

The Criterion Collection

Cast Tags:  , , , , , , , ,

Academy Award
Best Foreign Language Film (Italy)

Cannes Film Festival Award
Best Actress (Giulietta Masina)

British Academy Award Nominations
Best Film From Any Source
Best Foreign Actress (Giulietta Masina)



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