Nights of Cabiria

Best Foreign Language Film
Academy Awards
Best Actress
Cannes Film Festival
Palme d’Or
Cannes Film Festival
Seeing is believing. One cannot describe the emotions that flicker across Masina's face.


Nights of Cabiria

NIGHTS OF CABIRIA (1957), Federico Fellini's Academy Award-winning showcase for his wife, actress/comedienne Giulietta Masina, opens December 17.

Streetwalker "Cabiria," a seemingly tough cookie, is hypnotized at a tenth-rate variety show by a third-rate magician, and what pours out...the innocent dreams of adolescence. Fellini's showcase for Masina — inspired by her character's brief appearance in his solo debut feature The White Sheik — is structured as a series of episodes ("each apparent irrelevance falls into place" - Pauline Kael): robbed of her purse and dumped into the river by her pimp boyfriend, she responds with earthy scorn (the authentic Roman epithets courtesy Pier Paolo Pasolini) by throwing his things into a bonfire; a famous movie star (played by Italian screen heartthrob Amedeo Nazzari) picks her up in a nightclub and whisks her away to his ridiculously luxurious villa; her encounter with a man with a sack, who delivers food and supplies to destitute Romans living in holes in the ground (a 7-minute scene cut by producer Dino de Laurentiis and not seen until it was put back by Rialto Pictures in 1998); a tear-drenched pilgrimage to a religious shrine undertaken with the hookers, pimps, and cripples that make up her world; and her romance with an understanding accountant (French star François Périer, the club owner in Melville's Le Cercle Rouge) — but there's a final devastating disillusion, followed by a resurgence that may be the most mysteriously magical shot in all of Fellini's work.

Nights of Cabiria won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (won by Fellini's La Strada, starring Masina, the previous year), with Masina taking home the Best Actress Award at Cannes. Other frequent Fellini collaborators on Cabiria include screenwriters Ennio Flaiano and Tullio Pinelli and composer Nino Rota.

The stunning new restoration features new subtitles by Bruce Goldstein, with Fiamma Arditi and Adrienne Halpern as consultants, an update of the 1998 translation and subtitles by Giulia D'Agnolo Vallan and Goldstein.

The new 4K restoration from Studiocanal and TF1, made at L'immagine Ritrovata Laboratory in Bologna, was created for Fellini 100, the international celebration of Fellini's centennial year in 2020 (he was born January 20, 1920), but postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Masina earns the praise she received for La Strada."
— Pauline Kael

"A deep, wrenching and eloquent filmgoing experience."
— Janet Maslin, The New York Times

"The most perfectly beautiful and touching of Fellini's movies."
— David Denby, New York Magazine

"An unqualified masterpiece." ~ Thelma Adams, New York Post
Not Rated
Drama, Auteur Cinema, Repertory
Federico Fellini
Federico Fellini, Ennio Flaiano, Tullio Pinelli, Pier Paolo Pasolini
Giulietta Masina, François Périer, Franca Marzi, Dorian Gray, Amedeo Nazzari
Winner, Best Foreign Language Film, Academy Awards
Winner, Best Actress, Cannes Film Festival
Nominee, Palme d’Or, Cannes Film Festival
Winner, Zulueta Prize ~ Best Actress, San Sebastián International Film Festival
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