HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
To the Stars
Lady Godiva Rides Again
Angelfish
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ
Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, A
This is a Hijack
Loved One, The
Jumanji: The Next Level
Krabi 2562
Call of the Wild, The
Diary of a Country Priest
Sea Fever
Throw Down
Grudge, The
Green Man, The
Specialists, The
Convoy
Romantic Comedy
Going Ape!
Rabid
Infinite Football
Little Women
Camino Skies
Ema
Another Shore
Cry Havoc
Legend of the Stardust Brothers, The
Mystery Team
Westward the Women
Demonwarp
Man Who Killed Don Quixote, The
Chloe
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure
Murder Inferno
Extraction
Overlanders, The
Can You Keep a Secret?
Women in Revolt
Astronaut
Peanut Butter Falcon, The
   
 
Newest Articles
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
The End of Civilisation as We Know It: The 50th Anniversary
The Whalebone Box: The Andrew Kotting Interview
Being Human: The Elephant Man on 4K UHD Blu-ray
It's! Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 3 on Blu-ray
Put the Boot In: Villain on Blu-ray
The Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 2: Vic Pratt Interview
All the Lonely People: Sunday Bloody Sunday on Blu-ray
Desperate Characters: Beat the Devil on Blu-ray
Chansons d'Amour: Alfie Darling on Blu-ray
Ozploitation Icon: Interview with Roger Ward
   
 
  City of Women A Man Bewildered
Year: 1980
Director: Federico Fellini
Stars: Marcello Mastroianni, Anna Prucnal, Bernice Stegers, Donatella Damiani, Jole Silvani, Ettore Manni, Fiametta Barama, Hélène Calzarelli, Isabelle Canto da Maya, Catherine Carrel, Stéphane Emilfork, Marcello Di Falco, Silvana Fusacchia, Gabriella Giorgelli
Genre: Comedy, Weirdo, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 2 votes)
Review: Snàporaz (Marcello Mastroianni) is on a train journey when he nods off thanks to the rhythmic motion of the carriage, but when he wakes up he notices with some interest that an attractive woman (Bernice Stegers) is sitting opposite him, and possibly returning that interest in the occasional glance in his direction. When the carriage jolts and nearly topples a bottle, they both reach for it to steady the receptacle, and before he knows what is happening he is in the bathroom with her and trying to persuade her to have sex with him. She kisses passionately enough, but then the train reaches her stop, frustrating his advances...

Director Federico Fellini was fascinated by women, so much so that if the characters in his films were not actually female then they would often be female-obsessed males, but nowhere was this preoccupation more evident than in this part of his last cycle of movies, City of Women, or La città delle donne if you spoke Italian. It came across as some satire or other, though whether it was sending up the feminist movement of the previous decade which showed no sign of abating, or the men who were left confused in the wake of all these assertive women was not entirely clear; in some scenes, either could be the case, but whichever the work proved controversial.

That would be flak from both sides, with some seeing this as Fellini's tone deaf attempts to make sense of modern woman in general and making a fool of himself. As a result, City of Women is rarely mentioned among the finest efforts of the great director, but over the years a cult developed of audiences who preferred to see it as a sympathetic and wryly - at times ribaldly - funny step back from the social turmoil brought about by the so-called battle of the sexes. Whatever it was, it was one of the strangest films in the maestro's canon, an increasingly surreal meander through various setpieces with the legendary Dante Ferretti on design duties, and for the most part living up to the imagination run riot on display.

Snàporaz follows this dream woman from the carriage and down by the tracks, whereupon the train pulls away without him leaving no option but to continue to follow her. The drive for feminine emancipation often generated one reaction in the men of the day, and that was to soothe its sting for them with humour, which was what Fellini was up to here, but don't go thinking this was a near-two and a half hour long Benny Hill special, as there was a thoughtful quality to this which belied its spoofy surface, which itself grew more serious and even bizarrely nightmarish as it progressed. Snàporaz's first port of call is a hotel where a conference of women is being held, but they are every one a militant, spouting anti-male rhetoric at great length which naturally disturbs him.

All he wanted was a quickie, consequence-free sex with this mystery lady and the further he pursues this the further it is apparent he's participating in an exercise in futility, embroiled in a morass of sexual complications. Having seen himself humiliated by the conference, a sequence which seems shrilly reactionary on Fellini's part though it is quite funny, Snàporaz - who is supposed to be the same character as Mastroianni played in , though he doesn't have to be - embarks on a quest to find the nearest railway station but soon that search transforms into one of those "into the night" movies which came into their own during the eighties, only this was one of the most wandering and picaresque. Our baffled hero, Fellini's stand-in as far as we can tell, moves from a journey with young women who playfully threaten to kill him to a doctor (Ettore Manni) who is even more sexist than he is, leading to an expedition into his own mind which ends in a curiously Charlie Bubbles fashion before a cop out which may not be. Food for thought if you could work it out, a visual feast if not. Music by Luis Bacalov.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3631 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (3)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
  Hannah Prosser
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
  Rachel Franke
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: