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Teorema (1968)

  Genre: Mystery

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Writer: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Cast: Silvana Mangano, Terence Stamp, Massimo Girotti, Anne Wiazemsky, Laura Betti & more
Awards: 1 win & 1 nomination
Release Date: 7 September 1968 (Italy)
User Rating: 7,1/10

Review: "This is Pasolini's primary anti-bourgeoisie film and is sort of a complementary companion of Luis Bunuel's "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie." While Bunuel's film attacks the European post-war middle class (slightly different from America's middle class, though just as apathetic and selfish) with mockery, humiliation, and eventually destruction, Pasolini takes a more soulful route, revealing the hidden desires of a class stifled by social dogma and propriety. Rather than turn them into effigy, he allows them to have epiphanies, realizing their inner hollowness, and taking different paths to self-fulfillment. "Teorema" means "theorem," and in this case, the mysterious, beautiful stranger embodied by Terrence Stamp offers proof of a certain Italian bourgeois family's misgivings. Pasolini here offers a lucid statement, less political than Bunuel, but just as poetic. His execution, however, is dry and hokey, as Stamp encounters each family member almost mathematically. While the actors provide genuine emotion (particuarly in facial expressions, which Pasolini, in his entire body of work, has shown overwhelming appreciation for), the structure of the film is so tight that he almost sucks the life right out of his message. It's a curious film, though, not completely lacking in entertainment value. In a way, it plays out like a sonnet or other tightly structured poem type. Recommended is "Porcile," made by Pasolini, with similar themes, but presented more organically."
Written by Dissidenz (imdb.com)

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