la grande bellezza

3

To this question, as kids, my friends always gave the same answer: “Pussy”. Whereas I answered “The smell of old people’s houses”. The question was “What do you really like the most in life?” I was destined for sensibility. I was destined to become a writer. I was destined to become Jep Gambardella.

The Great Beauty (2013) dir. Paolo Sorrentino

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“Perché non ha mai più scritto un libro ?”
“Cercavo la grande bellezza. Ma… non l’ho trovata.”

“Why did you never write another book ?”
“I was looking for the great beauty. But.. I didn’t find it.”

La Grande Bellezza (2013) dir. Paolo Sorrentino

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I believe that the beauty in places is evident—however, in people it is a lot more hidden. The great attraction of human beings, is that this beauty manifests itself in fleeting moments and thunders. Exterior beauty is ephemeral, it comes and goes. But true beauty is connected to other feelings, such as joy and tenderness. These are feelings that have nothing to do with exterior appearances, and are hidden deeper inside things and people.

Paolo Sorrentino on “The Great Beauty”

Finisce sempre così. Con la morte. Prima, però, c'è stata la vita, nascosta sotto il bla bla bla bla bla. È tutto sedimentato sotto il chiacchiericcio e il rumore. Il silenzio e il sentimento. L'emozione e la paura. Gli sparuti incostanti sprazzi di bellezza. […]
—  Paolo Sorrentino, Explicit de “La Grande Bellezza” (2013)
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‘La Grande Bellezza’ (The Great Beauty), Paolo Sorrentino (2013)

This is how it always ends. With death. But first there was life, hidden beneath the blah, blah, blah… It’s all settled beneath the chitter chatter and the noise, silence and sentiment, emotion and fear. The haggard, inconstant flashes of beauty. And then the wretched squalor and miserable humanity. All buried under the cover of the embarrassment of being in the world, blah, blah, blah… Beyond there is what lies beyond. And I don’t deal with what lies beyond. Therefore… let this novel begin. After all… it’s just a trick. Yes, it’s just a trick.

A questa domanda, da ragazzi, i miei amici davano sempre la stessa risposta: “La fessa”. Io, invece, rispondevo: “L'odore delle case dei vecchi”. La domanda era: “Che cosa ti piace di più veramente nella vita?”
Ero destinato alla sensibilità.
—  La Grande Bellezza
I spent all my summers making plans for September.
Not any longer.
Now I spend the summer remembering the good intentions which vanished.
In part because of laziness, in part because of carelessness.
What’s wrong with feeling nostalgic?
It’s the only distraction for those who’ve no faith in the future.
—  Paolo Sorrentino, La Grande Bellezza