The Conformist (1970 film)

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The Conformist (1970 film)_table_infobox_0

The ConformistThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_0_0
ItalianThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_1_0 Il conformistaThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_1_1
Directed byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_2_0 Bernardo BertolucciThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_2_1
Produced byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_3_0 Maurizio Lodi-FeThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_3_1
Screenplay byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_4_0 Bernardo BertolucciThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_4_1
Based onThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_5_0 The Conformist

by Alberto MoraviaThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_5_1

StarringThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_6_0 Jean Louis Trintignant

Stefania Sandrelli Gastone Moschin Dominique Sanda Pierre ClémentiThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_6_1

Music byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_7_0 Georges DelerueThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_7_1
CinematographyThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_8_0 Vittorio StoraroThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_8_1
Edited byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_9_0 Franco ArcalliThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_9_1
Production

companiesThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_10_0

Mars Film Produzione

Marianne Productions Maran FilmThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_10_1

Distributed byThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_11_0 Paramount PicturesThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_11_1
Release dateThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_12_0 The Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_12_1
Running timeThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_13_0 108 minutesThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_13_1
CountryThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_14_0 Italy

France West GermanyThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_14_1

LanguageThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_15_0 Italian

French EnglishThe Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_15_1

BudgetThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_16_0 $750,000The Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_16_1
Box officeThe Conformist (1970 film)_header_cell_0_17_0 207.3 million (Italy)

570,149 admissions (France)The Conformist (1970 film)_cell_0_17_1

The Conformist (Italian: Il conformista) is a 1970 political drama film directed by Bernardo Bertolucci, whose screenplay is based on the 1951 novel The Conformist by Alberto Moravia. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_0

The film stars Jean-Louis Trintignant, Stefania Sandrelli, Gastone Moschin, Enzo Tarascio, Fosco Giachetti, José Quaglio, Dominique Sanda and Pierre Clémenti. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_1

The film was a co-production of Italian, French, and West German film companies. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_2

Bertolucci makes use of the 1930s art and decor associated with the Fascist era: the middle-class drawing rooms and the huge halls of the ruling elite. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_3

Plot The Conformist (1970 film)_section_0

In Paris, Marcello Clerici finalizes his preparations in assassinating his former college professor, Luca Quadri. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_4

It frequently returns to the interior of a car driven by Manganiello as the two of them pursue the professor and his wife. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_5

Through a series of flashbacks, he is seen discussing with his blind friend Italo his plans to marry, his somewhat awkward attempts to join the Fascist secret police, and his visits to his parents: a morphine-addicted mother at the family's decaying villa, and his unhinged father at an insane asylum. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_6

In another flashback, Marcello is seen as a boy during World War I, who finds himself in his family's wealth. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_7

He is humiliated by his schoolmates until he is rescued by Lino, a chauffeur. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_8

Lino offers to show him a pistol and then makes sexual advances towards Marcello, which he partially responds to before grabbing the pistol and shooting wildly into the walls and into Lino, then flees from the scene of what he assumes is a murder. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_9

In another flashback, Marcello and his fiancée Giulia discuss the necessity of his going to confession, even though he is an atheist, in order for her Roman Catholic parents to allow them to marry. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_10

Marcello agrees and, in confession, admits to the priest to have committed many grave sins, including his homosexual intercourse with and subsequent murder of Lino, premarital sex, and his absence of guilt for these sins. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_11

Marcello admits he thinks little of his new wife but craves the normality that a traditional marriage with children will bring. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_12

The priest is shocked — and pruriently interested in Marcello's homosexual experience — but quickly absolves Marcello once he hears that he is currently working for the Fascist secret police, called Organization for Vigilance and Repression of Anti-Fascism. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_13

Marcello finds himself ordered to assassinate his old acquaintance and teacher, Professor Quadri, an outspoken anti-Fascist intellectual now living in exile in France. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_14

Using his honeymoon as a convenient cover, he takes Giulia to Paris where he can carry out the mission. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_15

While visiting Quadri he falls in love with Anna, the professor's young wife, and pursues her. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_16

Although it becomes clear that she and her husband are aware of Marcello's Fascist sympathies and the danger he presents to them, she responds to his advances, as well as forming a close attachment to Giulia, towards whom she also makes sexual advances. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_17

Giulia and Anna dress extravagantly and go to a dance hall with their husbands where Marcello's commitment to the fascists is tested by Quadri. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_18

Manganiello is also at the dance hall, having been following Marcello for some time and doubtful of his intentions. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_19

Marcello secretly returns the gun that he has been given and gives Manganiello the location of Quadri's country house where the couple plan to go the following day. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_20

Even though Marcello has warned Anna not to go to the country with her husband and has apparently persuaded her to stay in Paris with him, she does make the car journey. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_21

On a deserted woodland road, Fascist agents conspire to stop Quadri's car with a fake accident scene. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_22

When Quadri attempts to help the apparently stricken driver, he is attacked and stabbed to death by several men who appear from the woods. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_23

Anna watches her husband being murdered with horror. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_24

When the men turn their attention to her, she runs to the car behind for help. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_25

When Anna sees that the passenger in the rear of the car is Marcello and realizes his betrayal, she begins to scream uncontrollably, before running into the woods to escape the men trying to kill her. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_26

Marcello watches without emotion as she is pursued through the woods and finally shot to death. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_27

Manganiello walks away from the car for a cigarette, disgusted with what he sees as Marcello's cowardice in not shooting Anna when she ran to their car. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_28

The ending of the film takes place in 1943 as the resignation of Benito Mussolini and the fascist dictatorship is announced. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_29

Marcello now has a small child and is apparently settled in a conventional lifestyle. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_30

He is called by Italo, his blind friend and former Fascist, and asked to meet on the streets. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_31

While walking with Italo, they overhear a conversation between two men in the act of picking each other up, and Marcello recognizes one of them as Lino, the man who seduced him when he was a boy and whom he had thought he had murdered. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_32

Marcello publicly denounces Lino as a Fascist, homosexual, and for murdering Professor Quadri and his wife. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_33

In his frenzy, he also denounces his friend Italo as a fascist. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_34

As a monarchist political crowd sweeps past, taking Italo with them, Marcello is left alone, remaining behind and separate from the passing crowd of the new movement, and having spurned his former friend. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_35

He sits near a small fire and stares intently behind him at the young man Lino had been talking to. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_36

Cast The Conformist (1970 film)_section_1

Dubbing voices (Italian version) The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_37

Source: RaroVideo Blu-ray booklet. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_38

Themes The Conformist (1970 film)_section_2

The film is a case study in the psychology of conformism and fascism: Marcello Clerici is a bureaucrat, cultivated and intellectual but largely dehumanized by an intense need to be 'normal' and to belong to whatever is the current dominant socio-political group. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_39

He grew up in an upper class, perhaps dysfunctional family, and he suffered a major childhood sexual trauma and gun violence episode in which he long believed (erroneously) that he had killed his chauffeur. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_40

He accepts an assignment from Benito Mussolini's secret police to assassinate his former mentor, living in exile in Paris. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_41

In Trintignant's characterization, Clerici is willing to sacrifice his values in the interests of building a supposedly "normal life." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_42

According to the political philosopher Takis Fotopoulos, The Conformist (as well as Rhinoceros by Ionesco) is "a beautiful portrait of this psychological need to conform and be 'normal' at the social level, in general, and the political level, in particular." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_43

According to the documentary Visions of Light the film is widely praised as a visual masterpiece. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_44

It was photographed by Vittorio Storaro, who used rich colors, authentic wardrobe of the 1930s, and a series of unusual camera angles and fluid camera movement. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_45

Film critic and author Robin Buss writes that the cinematography suggests Clerici's inability to conform with "normal" reality: the reality of the time is "abnormal." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_46

Also, Bertolucci's cinematic style synthesizes expressionism and "fascist" film aesthetics. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_47

Its style has been compared with classic German films of the 1920s and 1930s, such as in Leni Riefenstahl's Triumph of the Will and Fritz Lang's Metropolis. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_48

In 2013, Interiors, an online journal concerned with the relationship between architecture and film, released an issue that discussed how space is used in a scene that takes place on the Palazzo dei Congressi. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_49

The issue highlights the use of architecture in the film, pointing out that in order to understand the film itself, it's essential to understand the history of the EUR district in Rome and its deep ties with fascism. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_50

Production The Conformist (1970 film)_section_3

The filming locations included Gare d'Orsay and Paris, France; Sant' Angelo Bridge and the Colosseum, both in Rome. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_51

Lead actor Trintignant learned his Italian-language lines phonetically, and per common practice in the Italian film industry at the time, was later dubbed over by another actor, Sergio Graziani. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_52

The film was influential on other filmmakers: the image of blowing leaves in The Conformist, for example, influenced a very similar scene in The Godfather, Part II (1974) by Francis Ford Coppola. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_53

Additionally, the scene in which Dominique Sanda's character is chased through the snowy woods after her husband has been murdered, is echoed with mood, lighting and setting in a third-season episode of The Sopranos, "Pine Barrens", directed by Steve Buscemi. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_54

Distribution The Conformist (1970 film)_section_4

The film premiered at the 20th Berlin International Film Festival on 1 July 1970, where it competed for the Golden Bear. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_55

However, due to the row over the participation of Michael Verhoeven's anti-war film o.k. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_56 , the festival was closed down three days later and no prizes were awarded. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_57

The film had a staggered release in Italy, opening in major cities in the early months of 1971: Milan on 29 January, Turin on 5 February and Rome on 25 March, for example. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_58

In the United States, the film screened at the New York Film Festival on 18 September 1970 and was given a limited release in select cities the following spring, opening in New York and Los Angeles in April 1971, and Chicago and Washington D.C. in May 1971. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_59

The first American release of the film was trimmed by five minutes compared to the Italian release; the missing scene features a group of blind people having a dance. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_60

They were restored in the 1996 reissue. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_61

The film was released in the United States on DVD by Paramount Home Entertainment on 5 December 2006. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_62

The DVD includes: the original theatrical version (runtime 111 minutes); The Rise of The Conformist: The Story, the Cast featurette; Shadow and Light: Filming The Conformist featurette; The Conformist: Breaking New Ground featurette. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_63

In 2011 the Cineteca di Bologna commissioned a 2K restoration of The Conformist, supervised by Storaro himself (and approved by Bertolucci), which screened in the Cannes Classics series on May 11, 2011, in conjunction with the presentation of an honorary Palme d'Or to Bertolucci. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_64

The restoration was done by Minerva Pictures-Rarovideo USA and L'Immagine Ritrovata (laboratory of the Cineteca di Bologna). The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_65

In 2014 the digital restoration was released theatrically by Kino Lorber in North America, and released on Blu-ray by Rarovideo USA on November 25, 2014. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_66

Critical response The Conformist (1970 film)_section_5

Vincent Canby, film critic for The New York Times, liked Bertolucci's screenplay and his directorial effort, and wrote, "Bernardo Bertolucci...has at last made a very middle-class, almost conventional movie that turns out to be one of the elegant surprises of the current New York Film Festival...It is also apparent in Bertolucci's cinematic style, which is so rich, poetic, and baroque that it is simply incapable of meaning only what it says...The movie is perfectly cast, from Trintignant and on down, including Pierre Clementi, who appears briefly as the wicked young man who makes a play for the young Marcello. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_67

The Conformist is flawed, perhaps, but those very flaws may make it Bertolucci's first commercially popular film, at least in Europe where there always seems to be a market for intelligent, upper middle-class decadence." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_68

A review in Variety stated, "For those who appreciate its subtleties, but also its subsurface power and great evocative qualities, it's a gem." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_69

Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune gave the film two-and-a-half stars out of four and called it "much more of a show than a story," with its narrative themes "all but lost amid Bertolucci's splendid recreation of the era. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_70

In other words, if you are looking for fashion and furnishing hints, this is the place." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_71

Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times declared that the film "places young Bernardo Bertolucci in the front ranks of Italian directors and among the finest film-makers working anywhere. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_72

In this dazzling film, Bertolucci, 30, manages to combine the bravura style of a Fellini, the acute sense of period of a Visconti and the fervent political commitment of an Elio Petri ('Investigation of a Private Citizen') with complete individuality and, better still, a total lack of self-indulgence." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_73

Gary Arnold of The Washington Post said that the film was "an extraordinarily beautiful and spellbinding picture," but "what's below the surface doesn't stand up to much analysis. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_74

I think this is true and that it amounts to a terrible flaw. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_75

The dramatic material, while intriguing, isn't adequately developed: many connecting or explanatory scenes appear to be missing (reading the original novel by Alberto Moravia restores some of these), the psychology of the most complex characters is murky, and the climactic and concluding scenes are positively trite." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_76

Jan Dawson of The Monthly Film Bulletin wrote, "In his screen adaptation of Moravia's novel, Bertolucci has eliminated all explanations or analysed motivations, as well as any allusions to Marcello's life before the moment he first sees Lino ... The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_77

The effort of these changes, in purely psychological terms, is to reduce Marcello's story to a model Freudian case history." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_78

In 1994 critic James Berardinelli wrote a review and heralded the film's look. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_79

He wrote, "Storaro and Bertolucci have fashioned a visual masterpiece in The Conformist, with some of the best use of light and shadow ever in a motion picture. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_80

This isn't just photography, it's art — powerful, beautiful, and effective. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_81

There's a scene in the woods, with sunlight streaming between trees, that's breathtaking to behold — and all the more stunning because of the brutal events that take place before this background." The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_82

In a 2012 article in The Guardian, John Patterson defined the movie as an "expressionist masterpiece", which "offered a blueprint for a new kind of Hollywood film," inspiring New Hollywood film makers. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_83

The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 98% of critics gave the film a positive review, based on 53 reviews. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_84

Awards The Conformist (1970 film)_section_6

Wins The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_85

The Conformist (1970 film)_unordered_list_0

Nominations The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_86

The Conformist (1970 film)_unordered_list_1

Soundtrack The Conformist (1970 film)_section_7

The CD soundtrack composed by Georges Delerue is available on Music Box Records label. The Conformist (1970 film)_sentence_87


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The Conformist (1970 film).