In Federico Fellini's popular film LA DOLCE VITA, a three-hour masterpiece that shows one man's descent into the sweet life of debauchery, Marcello Mastroianni stars as eccentric journalist Marcello Rubini. On assignment to chronicle the lives of the rich and famous Italian aristocracy in a gossip column for a Roman newspaper, Marcello floats from one fabulous party to the next, meeting all varieties of beautiful, extravagant people. While he would never protest this seemingly ideal job, it makes him feel lonely and empty, and he stays up drinking and dancing night after night only to wake up each morning unbalanced and unfocused. The film follows Marcello's ups and downs in an episodic pattern in which each evening is a new story, a new adventure, a new dare, a new woman with whom to fall helplessly in love--but only for that night. Each morning the slate is wiped clean, and Fellini resets Marcello's score to zero. Sprinkled with religious images and gestures at salvation, LA DOLCE VITA is supreme in the beauty of its all-encompassing symbolism that is expressed through lavish sets, an alluring script, overemphasized physical movements, roller-coaster jazz music, and helpless emotions.
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