La Dolce Vita—Movie Review

401 words | 2 page(s)

In La Dolce Vita, we witness what many would consider an old film from a society far removed. While I agree that we live in a different age, with technology, communication, and values that separate us from mid-twentieth century Europe, we also share a significant amount of ground with the film and its culture. Its themes and style show us the relevance that La Dolce Vita carries for today.

The film released in 1960, a time of prosperity and boredom in the United States and in Europe. With the conclusion of the World Wars, the Western world began rebuilding itself and by the 60’s developed societies of wealth and increasing luxury. For the first time, the common man possessed disposable income and disposable time, and thus became bored with typical life. Therefore, we see the rise of entertainment and even promiscuity in both the United States and Europe.

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In La Dolce Vita, we discover overlap between the film and the culture of the 1960s. For example, the story centers on a man bored with his work and life who turns to the pleasures of Rome. His job, gossip columnist, even reveals the type of work that developed at the time; he earns a living through not new reporting or journalism, but gossip. Likewise, his journey through Rome represents a search for significance and even satisfaction that his job and money fail to provide. Each of these elements aligns with Western culture of its decade.

We see similar connections in the film’s style. For example, the main male character wears a dark suit and sunglasses; he looks cool and at ease. The woman fashions a black dress that accentuates her large breasts which accompany her flowing hair. She emits the sexuality that occupy the film and obsessed the culture. Furthermore, we see fancy cars and fantastic monuments of Rome to support these cool, fashionable, and wealthy trends.

The film and its style pertain not only to the culture of the 1960s but also, if not more so, today. The West currently enjoys a prosperity and ease never before seen, and finds itself obsessed with image, entertainment, and sex. Any glimpse at the shows we watch or the life of a common man or woman reveal the values exhibited in La Dolce Vita. Thus, the movie appeals today, and we should learn from its lessons of satisfaction, dissatisfaction, and the search for happiness.

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