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8½ (1963)

Federico Fellini’s Oscar-winning account of Guido Anselmi, an overworked movie director (Marcello Mastroianni) crossing the line between reality and fantasy.

Guido (pictured above) is spiritually paralysed by a midlife crisis and loses himself in fantasy and reminiscences as he is besieged by sycophants and collaborators while struggling to get started on an unwieldy science-fiction epic.

His introspections revolve around sexual, religious, and sociological themes in a free-form style that can be taken as cinematic poetry, self-analysis, or self-indulgence.

From the moment the protagonist floats out of a traffic jam in the opening scene, 1960s cinema was opening out, for better or worse, to a more freewheeling, self-consciously stylised approach.

The women in his life are Claudia Cardinale, Anouk Aimée, Sandra Milo, Rosella Falk, Barbara Steele and Madeleine Lebeau.

Fellini’s autobiographical tour de force was film number 8½ (counting each of three shorts as half a film) in his career, hence the title.

Winner of a Best Foreign Film Oscar the movie formed the basis of a 1982 hit Broadway musical called Nine.

Guido Anselmi
Marcello Mastroianni
Claudia
Claudia Cardinale
Luisa Anselmi
Anouk Aimée
Carla
Sandra Milo
Rossella
Rossella Falk
Gloria Morin
Barbara Steele
Mezzabotta
Mario Pisu
Producer
Guido Alberti
French actress
Madeleine Lebeau
Writer
Jean Rougeul

Director
Federico Fellini

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