The first time I watched this, I felt bad for not liking it. Just… nothing ever happened, and it seemed to mostly consist of people standing theatrically far apart from each other and looking away. Bored me to death. Then I embraced my dislike of L’Avventura since I found that more and more Italian films made me feel tired and annoyed. And geez, can those mofos not lip-synch properly. I will never get over that. But watching L’Eclisse and talking to Dawn convinced me to give this one another go, and so I have…
And what a masterpiece it is! Beautiful from start to finish. I guess knowing what I was in for (pace-and-plot-wise) and knowing what to look for (camera compositions, not an engaging story) really helped. Played most of the commentary track afterwards and that helped too.
There is a story here. Gorgeous Claudia (Monica Vitti) vacations with her friends Anna (reconnecting with fiance Sandro after months away) and Giulia (with her drab husband) on a cruise. At a rocky island, Anna disappears and never returns. Claudia and Sandro search everywhere for her, extending the search to the mainland, where they finally fall for each other and give up on Anna.
Story’s not so bad, characters not as horrible as all that, just can’t believe that Antonioni can set up EVERY shot so beautifully.