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Dolce Vita Confidential : Fellini, Loren, Pucci, Paparazzi, and the Swinging High Life of 1950s Rome
by Shawn Levy


Overview -

From the ashes of World War II, Rome was reborn as the epicenter of film, fashion, creative energy, tabloid media, and bold-faced libertinism that made "Italian" a global synonym for taste, style, and flair. A confluence of cultural contributions created a bright, burning moment in history: it was the heyday of fashion icons such as Pucci, whose use of color, line, and superb craftsmanship set the standard for women's clothing for decades, and Brioni, whose confident and classy creations for men inspired the contemporary American suit.  Read more...


 
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More About Dolce Vita Confidential by Shawn Levy
 
 
 
Overview

From the ashes of World War II, Rome was reborn as the epicenter of film, fashion, creative energy, tabloid media, and bold-faced libertinism that made "Italian" a global synonym for taste, style, and flair. A confluence of cultural contributions created a bright, burning moment in history: it was the heyday of fashion icons such as Pucci, whose use of color, line, and superb craftsmanship set the standard for women's clothing for decades, and Brioni, whose confident and classy creations for men inspired the contemporary American suit. Rome's huge movie studio, Cinecitta, also known as "Hollywood-on-the Tiber," attracted a dizzying array of stars from Charleton Heston, Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn, Ava Gardner, and Frank Sinatra to that stunning and combustible couple, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, who began their extramarital affair during the making of Cleopatra. And behind these stars trailed street photographers--Tazio Secchiarioli, Pierluigi Praturlon, and Marcello Gepetti--who searched, waited, and pounced on their subjects in pursuit of the most unflattering and dramatic portraits of fame.

Fashionistas, exiles, moguls, and martyrs flocked to Rome hoping for a chance to experience and indulge in the glow of old money, new stars, fast cars, wanton libidos, and brazen news photographers. The scene was captured nowhere better than in Federico Fellini's masterpiece, La Dolce Vita, starring Marcello Mastroianni and the Swedish bombshell Anita Ekberg. It was condemned for its licentiousness, when in fact Fellini was condemning the very excess, narcissism, and debauchery of Rome's bohemian scene.

Gossipy, colorful, and richly informed, Dolce Vita Confidential re-creates Rome's stunning ascent with vivid and compelling tales of its glitterati and artists, down to every last outrageous detail of the city's magnificent transformation.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780393247589
  • ISBN-10: 0393247589
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: October 2016
  • Page Count: 480
  • Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.5 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Performing Arts > Film - History & Criticism
Books > History > Europe - Italy
Books > Performing Arts > Individual Director

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-08-29
  • Reviewer: Staff

In this fast-paced, detailed study, film critic Levy (Rat Pack Confidential) turns his attention to Rome in the 1950s and ’60s—a city that, he argues, became the standard for every other cultural hub in the world. This is a grandiose claim, but Levy successfully supports it. He begins with an eclectic portrait of Rome’s rise out of the ashes of WWII into a metropolis: its cafes brimming with artists and writers, its cinema industry swelling from the elaborate patronage under Mussolini, and, in the middle of it all, the emergence of a new professional group, the paparazzi. The occasionally overwrought tone of Levy’s prose is mitigated by his obvious enthusiasm for his subject and the sheer breadth of information. Levy moves from homicide investigations to the history of “Hollywood on the Tiber,” and with the legendary Federico Fellini as a through-line, this becomes a fascinating look at decades of Italian cultural history. Eight pages of photos. (Oct.)

 
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