POV

“Marcello Come Here”

And where do we find ourselves today? Are our pseudo-feminist pop stars our modern day Ekbergs with their some-how empowering antics?

Story by Teo Babini - teo@citizenbrooklyn.com Archival Images

Last Sunday we bid farewell to Anita Ekberg, a member of a dying breed of, regardless of anyone’s specific opinion on them, sensational women who have had a serious influence on the world we live in today. “La Dolce Vita” was released about half a century ago, and yet its commentary is timelessly relevant to today’s modern culture.

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

Fellini’s ever-visionary assessment of societal decadence in this crystal ball of a film was way ahead of his time, lest we forget the original Paparazzo. It’s a case of art imitating life imitating art, and so on, where the characters in some way play themselves, celebrity obsession and shallow appreciation, not to mention painful visions of class divide.

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

And where do we find ourselves today? Are our pseudo-feminist pop stars our modern day Ekbergs with their some-how empowering antics? I certainly think it’s all an evolution there of. I don’t think Fellini’s ideas were dystopian, but living in the modern version of the world he created feels that way sometimes. It’s always a question of clarity, and when these social pitfalls have been under a director’s microscope fifty-five years ago, how were we not able to recognize the danger and change course?

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

Instead we fell headlong into the trap. I guess the bigger question is what has changed? I was discussing the matter with my father, born in the Italy five years before the film’s release, and it was a matter of elegance. Yes, celebrities were always full of shit, rabble-rousers, but were so with a degree of natural grace.

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

We are generation who has run the sacred into the ground, burying our last shreds of dignity with along with the relics of a people who lived to see the farthest ripples of their existence. Farewell, Marcello! Farewell, Federico! Farewell, Sylvia! May you all rest in peace.

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

Photo © Archival Photo

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