Love on the waves and streets of Italy seems far too common a conception to make much headway, but L’Avventura and director Michelangelo Antonioni make their mark through the desires of two distant lovers realising their worth, and hating the outcome. When the one connection between them disappears, they are left to their own devices. They are free to reconcile their apparent feelings for one another. What Antonioni does, though, is make it so that their affair is just that. A rebellion against a system that had no interest in them in the first place. Fraying emotions and bubbling tensions are caused not through love, but through the boredom of their holiday.
Risk-taking is the real stunning style that Michelangelo Antonioni brings to each of his films. He has bold and great ideas, yet their execution is often redundant and dire. La Notte manages to circumvent those problems, more through its cast than its direction. A sad shame it may be that Blow-Up never managed to mount the manageable problems of its story with its effective casting, but at least La Notte rings through with far more success. It is, perhaps, due to the tone of the story and the calibre of casting displayed here. One single day in the life of a discouraged author, his suffering wife and their dying friend.
A man surrounded by everything he could possibly want is bored of his life. Could we even consider this tale a surprise? Gluttony and all the pangs of idleness and stifled lust that come with it take centre stage throughout Michelangelo Antonioni’s film here. From its cool, hippie funk soundtrack that was so usual for the time, to its deep-rooted 60s flair, Blow-Up channels clear iconography and does little else with it. So much effort is clear throughout, Antonioni works tirelessly to bring the story of a man wrapped up in a moment far removed from his world. Injecting passion and fear into his life once more, accidentally capturing the act of murder on his camera, Blow-Up hopes to strike unnerving prose, but misses the mark ever so slightly.