THE VOICE OF THE MOON REVIEWED
“The Voice of the Moon” was Fellini’s final film. But, you’ve got Robert Benigni starring, so expect the laughs. But, it’s about a crazy person lost in a world of nostalgia and false dreams. If you’ve seen one later Fellini film, you’ve seen them all. A bewildered Italian man roams landscapes trying to find purpose to life, but then getting crushed by the vulgarity of it all. It’s not “Amarcord”, but what is?
Benigni finds new legs to the material, but it’s not like he’s reinventing the wheel. The film didn’t get theatrical exhibition in North America upon its 1990 release. While it was a different time, I can see why this release failed to inspire devotion. It’s a short film that spends its time trying to justify being feature length. I appreciate finally getting the chance to see the movie, but it’s not essential by any stretch of the imagination.
- Archive Gallery
- 1.66:1 1080p transfer
- LPCM MONO
RELEASE DATE: 10/31/17
The Plot Thus Far
The swansong of the great Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini (La dolce vita, 8½), The Voice of the Moon emerged without fanfare: it played the Cannes Film Festival out of competition after its Italian premiere and failed to secure distribution in North America and the UK. This new restoration from the original negative seeks to right that wrong and provide the film with a second chance… Adapted from a novel by Ermano Cavazzoni, The Voice of the Moon concerns itself with Ivo Salvini (Roberto Benigni, Life Is Beautiful), recently released from a mental hospital and in love with Aldini (Nadia Ottaviani). As he attempts to win her heart, he wanders a strange, dreamlike landscape and encounters various oddball characters, including Gonnella (Paolo Villagio, Fantozzi), a paranoid old man prone to conspiracy theories. Concluding a career that had stretched back more than fifty years, The Voice of the Moon combines the nostalgia of Amarcord (the film is set in Emilia-Romagna countryside of the director’s youth), the surreal satire of City of Women and the naïf-adrift-in-a-brutal-world structure of La strada. Plenty for Fellini fans to get their teeth into.