In this film directed by Federico Fellini, Snàporaz—played by Marcello Mastroianni, in a semi-reprise of his character from 8 ½—is a businessman who pursues a mysterious woman he encounters on a train. When the train stalls, however, he follows her out into a forest only to lose her in the midst of a chaotic hotel. Trapped, he finds himself one of the few men at a feminist conference where he is scrutinized and ridiculed in a number of absurd acts. The charismatic avatar finds himself initiated into a phantasmagoric world as though in a dream, where women (or an idea of women) have taken power, and which is structured like an array of psychosexual set-pieces. An examination into the subconscious, City of Women is abound with spectacle, fantasy, and humor in this rare screening by the “Maestro,” and an introduction into his delirious late period.
Runtime 1 hr 19 minutes
Image credit: Courtesy of Cohen Film Collection.