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Intervista

Choices Select // Unrated // October 29, 2002
List Price: $24.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by D.K. Holm | posted December 10, 2002 | E-mail the Author
The Movie:

Intervista is meant to be some kind of celebration of Italy's Cinecita but comes across as a typically chaotic and redundant late film by Federico Fellini.

The "plot" of this plotless film is that Fellini has returned to Cinecita to make a film based on Kafka's America, and is interviewed by a Japanese television crew. While filming, a younger version of Fellini wanders the lot and encounters various filmmakers. Later, Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg, late of Fellini's La Dolce Vita, reunite to reminisce. Many of the "cast" members are actually members of Fellini's actual crew of casting directors and gaffers. Fellini and Mastroianni appear only briefly in the film.

You really have to like Fellini to like this film, and apparently Martin Scorsese does, as he participated in the revived presentation of this 1987 film. It's final effect, however, is simply to bore. Made for television, the film doesn't even have the usual visual flair that Fellini's '60s films enjoyed.

The DVD

VIDEO: Choices Select does a fine job with this ultimately not so interesting film. The full frame transfer is clean and bright, and it is not inundated with extras designed to distract you from the inadequacy of the film itself.

SOUND: The stereo audio track is adequate for a typically carnivalesque Fellini film. English subtitles are available.

MENUS: The static, silent menu is perfunctory, and offers the 105 minute film with only five chapter selections, which are also not selectable from the menu. There's also a screen that provides information about Choices Video.

EXTRAS: There are three main supplements to this disc. The first is an audio commentary track from Ken Wlaschin, director of creative affairs for the AFI. He is surprisingly sympathetic and does walk the viewer through the catalog of images that hark back to earlier Fellini films. But when the film doesn't make sense in its chronology, he freely admits being confused. The second is a video interview (26:35) with Wlaschin who tries to introduce the film to the viewer as actually interesting. The second video interview (25:52) is with Charlotte Chandler, who wrote a book about the director called I, Fellini.


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