Inspired for many by Fellini’s masterpiece 8 1/2, Auteurs looking specifically at identity in contexts timeless and unique have a big place in my heart. Whether combing for an authenticity unlocked/never fully obtainable in memories of childhood or plummeting into an unavoidable frailty, solidifying one’s fearless projection into the world or ever questioning the desire to engage at all, these films look at the human condition and give wildly different responses.
For instance, resorting to the placebos and herbs (even unknowingly to an episode with opium) of her New York acupuncturist, Woody Allen’s Alice (his remodeling of Fellini’s Giulietta Degli Spiriti) unwittingly unearths her basic childhood-formed desires and makes a huge change of lifestyle. 2001: A Space Odyssey contrasts the impermanence of animus with the singularly aware objects it leaves behind. Woody Allen’s protagonists flip and flutter with the blows and bruises of Jazz, or erect a classicalizd instrument of survival against fate’s torments. Bergman’s protagonists succumb to the horrifying loss of systemic ineptitude and scientific predominance, questioning the basic differences between and core vacuity within individuals, genders and relationships. Each represents a unique response to our world and its ever evolving (yet somehow cyclical) society.
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