Set to the music of Antonio Vivaldi, Jean Renoir’s ravishing, sumptuous tribute to the theatre involves a viceroy who receives an exquisite golden coach and gives it to the tempestuous star of a touring commedia dell’arte company (the vivacious Anna Magnani).
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Joyfully entropic, reordering itself within a grand design to accommodate the flux of human impulse. It uses the stage as a backdrop of stability with which to highlight the kinetic power of movies-a modern way of seeing that looks back in time, measuring what is transient and what is lasting in the way we look at each other. Might just be great enough to reconcile all the major paradoxes of art and life.
A complex masterpiece, masquerading as a light and comic period piece. Truffaut nails it when he called it "The noblest and most refined film ever made...a film about theatre in the theatre". I wish that "The Golden Coach" and Renoir's "The River" were as known as some of his earlier films, both are incredibly beautiful works of art.
While I admire it's theme of selflessness, my issue is that I never once believed the romance between Anna Magnani and any of her three lovers. The bullfighter and the her first lover left barely an impression and Don Antonio just felt like another jaded aristocrat character. Sadly, I also didn't think Anna herself was all that great as she was mostly mopey and rarely exuded a sense of passion for life and people.
"Actors, how shocking!" Visual splendor, vivacious storytelling and vivid emotion. All in glorious technicolor! A digestible social commentary about cultural boundaries wrapped in drama akin to the traveling troupe. The juxtaposition of visual design between shots is mesmerizing; each composition is layered, yet poignant -must be a genetic disposition. Allen and Almodovar took notes on this one, I'm sure.