It's been a very long time I haven't had such an experience. The film plays in the Swiss resort of Davos and two friends, a composer and a screenwriter, meet their year after year and are now facing growing age, boredom... and their future. While watching I had images that were mixed with vague feelings from Arizona Dreams, combined with some feelings of emptiness like in Lost in Translations. And then again a bit later, I felt some remanence of something seen or heard in a Kusturica. But what first came to mind was something else. My mental imagery has been nourished with of some of Arthur Schnitzler's short stories (Traumnovelle) or some descriptions by Stefan Zweig of a hotel in Brunnen on lake Lucerne.
So there I was watching the latest film by Paolo Sorrentino "Beauty" (La Giovinezza). Each anticipated feeling was splendidly followed by an imagery into a scene, oniric and revealing, strenghened by the power of the scenery in which the film was played. You can imagine Thomas Mann, walking around and getting the ideas for his Zauberberg, and at the same time feeling the existential bordom that can hover over one's life, like a burnout, but promising, unexpectedly, an energy of renewal once inspiration found.
I realize that words cannot describe the excellence of the filming, the flow between the scenes and the intimacy of the photography. Jane Fonda? brilliant! Harvey Keitel and Michael Caine? even more so! Go and see it!
If there is one place I would've dreamt to be for backstage photo shooting, it would've been there.
A few pics found on Internet: