Fellini: I’m a Born Liar

Documentaries on cinema legends tend, as a rule, to the hagiographic (or occasionally, the exploitative) rather than the truly illuminating.
One must therefore commend Damien Pettigrew on his achievement here: An exceptional feature-length study of one of the greatest filmmakers of the 20th Century, and which illuminates its subject with a rare acuity and precision. Centred upon a lengthy interview with the late maestro himself – in which he candidly discusses seemingly every aspect of his life and work, from his early life, to his relationship with Italian culture, to the inspiration behind his later films – it’s also distinguished by superior production values (befitting its subject, it looks magnificent) and a measured, authoritative tone. Tellingly, many of the cameos prove almost as fascinating as the man himself: the late Italian novelist Italo Calvino, for example, makes a noteworthy appearance, predictably wise about the distinction between truth and fiction, as does a somewhat haunted- looking Donald Sutherland and a wary Terence Stamp.
Director Damian Pettigrew and Producer Olivier Gal will introduce the screening.
(2002. France/Italy/UK. English subtitles. Colour/B&W. 35mm.105min)

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