Anna Magnani: La biografia (Overlook) by Matilde Hochkofler

By Matilde Hochkofler

Anna Magnani si è sempre sentita abbandonata sin da quando bambina viveva a Roma con los angeles nonna “tra una lacrima di troppo e una carezza in meno”, quella carezza che avrebbe voluto ricevere dalla mamma lontana. Proprio dal desiderio di quell’amore negato nasce l. a. sua vocazione artistica che los angeles spinge a cercarlo nell’applauso del pubblico. Dalle tavole del palcoscenico dove si rivela interprete di dolente drammaticità all’affermazione comica nelle riviste accanto a Totò, dalle particine nei movie degli esordi al grande riconoscimento internazionale con Roma città aperta, fino a los angeles rosa tatuata che, prima attrice italiana, le fa conquistare l’Oscar. Nei suoi ricordi, in quelli del figlio Luca, nelle lettere degli amici e dei compagni di lavoro rivivono i retroscena drammatici e irresistibili del cinema tra Cinecittà e Hollywood sullo sfondo della società italiana e dei suoi cambiamenti.

Il volto irregolare segnato dalle esperienze della vita, i grandi occhi luminosi, i capelli scarmigliati, los angeles voce roca, los angeles risata improvvisa, Anna vive il profondo bisogno di libertà che l. a. porta a cercare l’indipendenza. Le sue appassionate storie d’amore, le tempestose litigate, le polemiche e le provocazioni ne fanno l’interprete-personaggio che sullo schermo si alimenta della propria fragilità, delle insicurezze e delle contraddizioni di un carattere strong point, sempre sul punto di esplodere. los angeles donna e l’attrice non sanno separarsi l’una dall’altra nelle determine femminili a cui dà vita con tutta se stessa, con l. a. partecipazione totale di chi non si allontana mai dalla propria autobiografia. Nei personaggi indimenticabili dei suoi movie – l. a. chief di L’onorevole Angelina, l’amante di Una voce umana, l. a. mamma di Bellissima, los angeles darkish girl di Nella città l’inferno, los angeles comparsa di Risate di gioia, los angeles prostituta di Mamma Roma – Anna ci viene incontro con le braccia aperte in una richiesta di aiuto, di complicità, d’amore.

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But there is more to recreating the past than sticking closely to an original text. Given that Rohmer is a film-maker, it is also necessary that the image looks like a truthful recreation of the past. For at least one commentator this is the cause for suspicion about the honesty of Rohmer’s dealings with Kleist: ‘Whereas Kleist’s novella disrupts the stability and coherent understanding of reality . . the idealistic realism of Rohmer’s mise en scène subscribes to a belief in the unique ability of film to capture reality’ (Rhiel 1991: 13).

Life for them is longing and hoping, and what fate puts out of their reach is turned cheaply and easily into inner riches of the soul’ (Lukács 1974: 153). For these dreamers of the everyday, everything remains possible for the simple reason that they cannot survive having to recognise and confront any moment of the miracle in which everything will be fulfilled. Indeed, a number of Rohmer’s films can be interpreted as master classes in the analysis of these Gardens of Eden (as for that matter can many of the novels of one of Rohmer’s favourite writers, Balzac).

The narrative line is episodic rather than dramatic, and totally lacking in that fluency, continuity and coherence usually sought after by realists’ (Crisp 1988: 82). 26 Eric Rohmer The entire film was shot in a studio, with stylised forests and short wooden turrets for castles. As if to make the artificiality even more pronounced, each episode is introduced and commented upon by a chorus of medieval singers that at least one American critic found to be incomprehensible (Rohmer in Ziolkowski 1982: 66).

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