The Innocent (L'Innocente)

At the Castro Theatre, Castro & Market, San Francisco

Admission: $5.00 & $15.00*

Luchino Visconti's last film - completed in 1976 shortly before his death - opened in New York in January of this year, and has become a surprise smash-hit at the box office, and a critical success as well. This special Premiere Benefit Screening will aid the Pacific Film Archive in its ongoing fund-raising drive, aimed at enabling PFA to maintain its past levels of activity in the face of the all-too-well-known fiscal constraints which affect all public institutions in California today.
The Innocent will begin its premiere theatrical engagement in San Francisco on Friday, June 8, at the Clay Theatre.

In order to mark the occasion of this premiere of Visconti's last film, The Pacific Film Archive, The Surf Theatres, and the Italian Cultural Institute will join forces to present a near-complete Retrospective of The Films of Luchino Visconti. Screenings will take place at the Clay Theatre between June 1 and June 7, with complete details and showtimes given in our June Calendar. Among the highlights will be special screenings of two long-unavailable Visconti classics - Bellissima (1951) with Anna Magnani and White Nights (1957) with Marcello Mastroianni and Maria Schell - both in English titled prints. Visconti's masterpiece, Rocco And His Brothers (1960), also missing from distribution for some years, will be shown in a 35mm subtitled print.

As for The Innocent, which Visconti adapted from Gabriele D'Annunzio's 1892 novel, Vincent Canby noted in his New York Times review: “The more profound connections (running through all Visconti) are in the passions that rule Visconti's principal characters, whether a lusty, sex-starved mistress of a roadside inn, a Sicilian aristocrat at the time of Italy's unification, or an upper-class Roman wife who manages to betray her philandering husband in a way that confers on him an unbearable innocence. The last is more or less the heart of The Innocent, which is among the most beautiful and severely disciplined films he has ever made.... Although The Innocent is one of Visconti's most beautiful films, the decor is essential to its meaning. The Innocent is also one of Visconti's most terse, most dramatically economical films. There's not a superfluous frame in it. Further, it is splendidly performed by Giancarlo Giannini, who indulges none of the comic mannerisms that are standard equipment in his work for Lina Wertmuller, and by Laura Antonelli, whose childlike face and voluptuous body combine to form a kind of ideograph that tells us what the film is all about.”

* Ticket Information:
Regular Tickets: $5.00
Available at the PFA Box Office (642-1412) Monday-Friday 6:15-10:00, weekends 4:00-10:00; from all BASS Outlets (Dial TELETIX); and at the Castro Theatre the evening of May 31.

Patron Tickets: $15.00
Available at the PFA Box Office or by mail from PFA (2625 Durant, Berkeley, 94720). Only 225 Patron Tickets will be sold.

Patron Ticket holders are invited to a post-screening Champagne Buffet reception hosted by the Italian Institute of Culture in the upstairs lobby of the Castro Theatre immediately following the screening. It is hoped that one of the participants in The Innocent will be present.

This page may by only partially complete. For additional information about this film, view the original entry on our archived site.