8 1/2 Women

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Released 1999

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8 1/2 Women

Movie Summary

Director:
Peter Greenaway
Released:
1999
Rating:
R
Directed by Peter Greenaway, the dark side of ecstasy unfolds against the backdrop of Japan's frenzied pachinko parlors and the Swiss countryside. After the death of his wife, a wealthy businessman questions his devotion to his passive spouse and denial of sensual experimentation for their many years of marriage. When his son returns to the family's Swiss chateau from Japan where he manages his father's pachinko parlors, he brings his father to see Federico Fellini's masterpiece, 8 1/2. The sight of so many magnificent women inspires them to turn their Swiss mansion into a chateau of sexual pleasure. But soon their wild sexual fantasies begin to unravel, and the two men discover that when fantasy becomes reality, the balance of power can shift. When it does, those seemingly in control don't always come out on top.

Metacritic Score

  • 75

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    One possible approach to 8 1/2 Women, I think, is to view it as a slowed-down, mannered, tongue-in-cheek silent comedy, skewed by Greenaway's anger and desire to manipulate.

  • 50

    Los Angeles Times Kevin Thomas

    A nod to Fellini--and that "half" turns out to be a typically dark Greenaway twist. Yet this film, one of Greenaway's most amusing and accessible, actually arrives at moments of te...

  • 40

    The New York Times Stephen Holden

    Its message is quite simple and all too familiar: when it comes to sex, all men are little boys.

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    Categories

    Comedy

    Themes

    Dark Comedy