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Something you should see…Bernardo Bertolucci’s Before the Revolution

Before the Revolution is a beautiful, if at times puzzling film. He made it when he was just 22, and his love for New Wave cinema shines through. A real cinematographer’s dream, the film centres on the young and handsome Fabrizio, a disillusioned son of a bourgeoisie family who’s drawn to Marxist ideals yet never quite escaping his affluent upbringing. He’s supposed to marry the equally upper-class Clelia but rejects this idea. In an attempt to curb this rebellion, his mother invites her troubled and unstable sister, Gina to their home with the intention that she will be able to better communicate with Fabrizio. However, the plan backfires and Fabrizio falls for Gina. The film then follows Fabrizio, his relationship with Gina and those around him. Beautifully shot in black and white in Parma in 1964, what the film lacks – with its jumpy and politically uncertain narrative – it makes up for with wonderfully strange set pieces which are accompanied by captivating sounds and are disconnected from the main story. So tricky in places, but fairly wonderful, overall. (Words: Chloe Lloyd)

In selected cinemas from April 8th.


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