Modernist Master: Michelangelo Antonioni


Michelangelo AntonioniUK / Italy111 minutes1966RColourEnglish

Jun 22
Jul 6
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A meticulous restoration of the ever-enigmatic Blow-Up, whose narrative ambiguities and irresolutions made it the trendiest cinematic conversation piece since Last Year at Marienbad and which continues to elicit intense critical scrutiny half a century after its making. Antonioni's first film in English is set in "swinging" mid-'60s London, where a disaffected fashion photographer (David Hemmings) stumbles upon a murder while taking pictures of a couple making love in a park — or so his blown-up photographs of the tryst seem to suggest. Hemmings is a whiter shade of pale as the callow shutterbug, his pallid ennui masterfully deployed by Antonioni, while Vanessa Redgrave is incandescent as the woman who may or may not have been used as lure to kill her suitor, her erotic anxiety palpable as she tries to wrest from the photographer an image that has both literally and metaphorically captured her. "[Blow-Up is] a statement of the artist, not on life but on art itself as the consuming passion of an artist's life" (Andrew Sarris).