Thursday, January 12, 2012

Spell Dir. Alberto Cavallone (1977)

AKA: L'uomo la donna e la bestia / Man, Woman and Beast

"L'uomo, la donna e la bestia" is what one could call an avant-garde film - it has something of Pasolini and of the Buñuel of "Un chien andalou". The film begins in black and white. A man is watching a gravestone. On the gravestone there's a photo - it's his own photo. We see some images in black and white. An image of a woman. B&w turns into colors. The woman moves.

The man who was staring at the gravestone is a communist in crisis (but he's not a wife-beater as another reviewer wrote). He doesn't know anymore if his ideology has any use or reality at all. What is truth? But he still hangs on to his icons: photos of Lenin, the hammer & sickle etc.. His wife is a mentally disturbed woman that can be sometimes very aggressive. We are in a small town in Italy. People are preparing themselves for the feast for the town's patron saint. The film feels natural: Little boys running around selling drawings of saints. The priest organizing the procession. Boys meeting girls at the town's main square etc... You don't feel that you're watching a film. I had almost the feeling of being there.

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