Michelangelo Antonioni’s rarely seen and underrated masterwork – perhaps due to its renowned sexual explicitness. IDENTIFICATION OF A WOMAN is the maverick director’s own bookend to his lifelong exploration of the imprecise nature of human relationships, incommunicability and alienation.
After his wife leaves him, a film director (ostensibly Antonioni’s alter-ego, played by Tomas Milian) enters into a passionate affair with a striking young aristocratic woman (Daniela Silverio). Soon a stranger warns him, with threats, to stop seeing her and some weeks later, after a lover’s row, she vanishes… Whilst searching for her, he meets a beautiful young actress (Christine Boisson), whose curiosity is piqued to find the missing woman…
Each frame, rigorously conceived by Antonioni and painted by Carlo Di Palma’s rich, beautifully modulated cinematography, is an essential – at times subliminal – part of the storytelling itself; culminating in the legendary filmic tour-de-force that is the fogbound highway scene. This release benefits from the most recent 2K restoration finally doing justice to the original vision of the artist’s painterly yet unsettling masterpiece.
Tellingly prescient, it also depicts a modernising world beset by fear: with gun-toting neighbour, alarmed-home, speeding blindly in fog, threats and disappearance… This spellbinding anti-romance is a quiet yet resounding masterpiece which became Antonioni’s last full film, cementing his legacy – as hailed by Martin Scorsese – as one of the greatest artists of the 20th century.
- Interview with Erica Antonioni – “Identification of a Director”
- An intimate video-diary of Michelangelo Antonioni – “With Michelangelo”
- Interview with Scholar Pasquale Iannone – “Antonioni’s Final Masterpiece”
- New subtitles and Hard-of-Hearing Closed Captions