1963 black and white film by Italian director Frederico Fellini. The title refers to the seven feature-length and one short ("half a film") he had previously directed. When he couldn't come up with a title, this became film number 8 and 1/2.

The film is about a director, Guido Anselmi, under pressure from a film studio to complete a film in fulfillment of his contract. Sets are built, actors have been hired, and the cameras are about to roll, but the director (played by Marcello Mastroianni) has no idea what the movie he is making is going to be about. The stress begins manifesting itself in a series of a series of strange dreams and hallucinations, where Anselmi finds himself in a cemetary talking to his dead parents and is transported to a surreal version of his childhood home.

The plot parallels Fellini's experience making this film. He began filming with only one set built, the set of his his childhood home, and reportedly made the rest up as he went along. The result is a beautiful, confusing, autobiographical, self-referential, and very cool film.

I had no idea what the hell was going on the first time I saw this film. Lots of people I've talked to have reported the same experience. It was only with the help of a film prof and a few bong hits that I was really able to understand this film and its subtleties, and when I did it was a pretty transcendental experience.

Jogs to my memory courtesy of the IMDB.

Seeing this movie was one of the most moving experiences of my life. Seeing it for the second time, on TV, brought me to tears, a sensation I hadn't known in 25 years.

Do not see this movie expecting to see entertainment, good and bad guys, a story line, the usual. Expect a stream of consciousness, like a diary, an impression of life as experienced by the main character, including his memories, wishes, and dreams. It captures my sense of 'real life' as closely as I have ever seen.

It is full of symbolism and cultural references and most of them will always be over my head. It doesn't matter. The basic message that permeates the whole film is simple enough: all of you people, you drive me crazy, with your pleas for attention, your complaints, your reproaches, yes I know I am an asshole, but I love you all.

The footage mostly consists of a whirlwind of faces and conversations, with the main character in the eye of the storm. This collage of images displays such passion for life and love that it moves me in a way no other movie has ever done.

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