City of Women

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Will Fellini ever learn to count beyond eight and a half? As Snaporaz (a discreetly ageing Mastroianni, still the alter egoist and flattering mirror image of his director) dozes off in a train to be whisked through a nightmare of ultra-militant feminism, here we are again on that familiar gaudy treadmill of Barnum and ballet, circus and comic strip. Yet if much of it verges on self-parody, a few of the set pieces are superb (the Women's Lib congress, every word of which, swears Fellini, was taken verbatim from feminist literature; the homage to the communal masturbatorium the cinema used to be). In his martyrdom, Snaporaz becomes hardly less poignant a creation than Ophüls' Lola Montès; and only a pinchpenny soul could denigrate the generosity, the sheer fertility of the Maestro's invention in this curate's egg by Fabergé.

Release details

Duration: 139 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Federico Fellini
Screenwriter: Federico Fellini, Bernardino Zapponi
Cast: Marcello Mastroianni
Anna Prucnal
Bernice Stegers
Iole Silvani
Donatella Damiani
Ettore Manni
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