Italy | 102 min.
black & white
DUAL FORMAT RELEASE INCLUDING BLU-RAY AND DVD VERSIONS OF THE FILM
• Beautiful new transfer of the film in its original 1.37:1 aspect ratio, presented in a 1080p AVC encode on the Blu-ray
• Newly translated optional English subtitles
• A new and exclusive video introduction to the film with critic and teacher Gabe Klinger
• A new and exclusive video featuring Gabe Klinger discussing Antonioni in the context of the Italian production system of the 1950s
• The film’s original Italian theatrical trailer
• 44-page booklet containing newly translated vintage criticism about the film, an excerpt from an interview with Antonioni, and a lengthy 1953 back-and-forth about the film between Antonioni and critic Luigi Chiarini
Michelangelo Antonioni, 1953
The third feature film by cinema master Michelangelo Antonioni, La signora senza camelie [The Lady Without Camelias], expanded the expressive palette of contemporary Italian movies, demonstrating that a personal vision could take an explicitly poetic tack; that “seriousness = neo-realism” was perhaps already turning into something of a truism; and that Antonioni would answer to no-one but himself.
It’s the story of a shopclerk named Clara (played by the captivating Lucia Bosè, also of Antonioni’s brilliant debut feature, Cronaca di un amore) who finds a chance casting in a small movie role develop into a full-blown career as screen-siren. Tension erupts when her husband can no longer tolerate watching her frivolous cinema escapades, and pushes her into a “serious, artistic” production of the life of Joan of Arc… whereupon she is castigated by the critical establishment.
A riveting ‘behind-the-scenes’ show-business drama, La signora senza camelie explores themes that would haunt its director from L’avventura through La notte and The Passenger — an individual’s tenuous hold on her identity, and the dangers inherent to performance… in life and on-screen. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present Antonioni’s masterful, highly personal La signora senza camelie for the first time in the UK — in a Dual Format release containing both Blu-ray and DVD versions of the film.