11/4, The Conformist

FRIDAY NOVEMBER 4 CINE/CLUB Randall Museum 199 Museum Way
SF 6:30 Refreshments 7pm film

Short film & Student film: TBA

Bernardo Bertolucci’s THE CONFORMIST (1970, Italy)

One of a kind. This is the tale of a spineless Italian aristocrat, who, during the reign of fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, is sent to Paris while on his honeymoon to assassinate his dissident ex-professor. Visually astounding, richly poetic with powerful set pieces, all the pieces you need to create a great film you won’t soon forget. The impact of this film on other directors has been enormous. Come and find out why.

PARENTAL WARNING: Some nudity and mild suggested sex scenes.


The Conformist is rather like a film encyclopedia of all the visual advances that have been made in film since the beginning: the moving camera, the dolly, the orchestration of scenes, the brilliant use of light and dark, arresting montage, the expressionist settings, the ingenious use of visual concepts bring the story brilliantly to life. There is never a moment without unusual visual ideas working to the max, and the chilling story of a brilliant student who joins the fascist undercover and is sent to kill his college mentor in Paris is strenuous indeed. When he falls in love with the wife of the victim, the film becomes operatic in its scope. It is an aesthetic masterpiece, but also doubles as a political film, etching a portrait of a fascist from the inside out. You won’t easily shake its power and beauty.

Bertolucci is an important Italian director that has produced a number of influential films. He received his training working with Pasolini (Mama Roma) and with his first films quickly gained a sturdy reputation. His 1972 film Last Tango In Paris brought him a lot of attention when Bertolucci was given a suspended prison sentence by an Italian court for obscenity, and his 1987 film The Last Emperor was celebrated throughout the world. It is, however, with The Conformist that he entered the pantheon of important directors.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s