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8 1/2 (Otto e mezzo)

DFI Cinema

Federico Fellini / Feature Narrative / Italy, France / 1963 / 132 min / Black & White / DCP
In Italian / Arabic, English subtitles
Interests: Drama
Rated: Parental guidance advised for viewers under the age of 15. Individuals under the age of 15 are not admitted into cinemas unless accompanied by an individual aged 18 or over.



Filmmaker Guido Anselmi is meant to go into production with his next project – an elaborate science-fiction feature – shortly, but he is suffering from director’s block as a result of intense pressure and issues with his health and marriage. He retreats to a health spa in the hopes of sorting everything out.
From this rather slight premise, master director Federico Fellini coaxes a truly brilliant film that has been ensconced in the Western canon since the moment of its release in 1963. A sort of comical and bittersweet tour of the mind of a conflicted artist, the film is made up of Guido’s dreams, daydreams, imaginings of his upcoming film and his memories, as they all puncture, embellish or distract from his current reality.
Often, the film shifts from one of these five registers of consciousness to another with little or no warning, though at first they can be differentiated – memories are fondly sentimental, daydreams gently lyrical, dreams symbolically bizarre. But Guido’s mind is the film’s entire universe, and eventually it becomes virtually impossible to tell the real from the illusory. As the film nears its close, this crescendo of fluidity reaches its peak, resulting in a final sequence that is one of the great triumphs of pure cinema.

About the Director

Born in Rimini, Italy, in 1920, Federico Fellini was one of the most influential filmmakers of the 20th century. After making several films in the 1950s, including ‘La Strada’ (1956), which won the first Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, he came to international attention with ‘La Dolce Vita’ in 1960. The film won the Palme d’Or at the Festival de Cannes, and was nominated for four Academy Awards, of which it took one. He would go on to make films for 30 years, among them ‘8½’ (1963), ‘Juliet of the Spirits’ (1965), ‘Fellini Satyricon’ (1969), ‘Amarcord’ (1973), ‘City of Women’ (1980) ‘Ginger and Fred’ (1986) and ‘Interview’ (1987).


Federico Fellini
Brunello Rondi, Tullio Pinelli, Ennio Flaiano, Federico Fellini
Angelo Rizzoli
Leo Catozzo
Production Designer
Piero Gherardi
Nino Rota
Gianni Di Venanzo
Marcello Mastroianni, Claudia Cardinale, Anouk Aimée, Sandra Milo, Rosella Falk, Barbara Steele

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