Le amiche / The Girlfriends (1955) Blu-Ray Criterion Collection
Unlike most of Antonioni’s films, which he wrote himself, Le Amiche (the title translates roughly as The Girlfriends) was adapted from a literary work, Cesare Pavese’s novella Among Women Only. It provides a clear identification figure in Clelia (Eleonora Rossi Drago), a woman of about 30 who returns to Turin, after years in Rome, to open a boutique. The building is still under construction, and Clelia finds herself at once attracted to and somewhat put off by Carlo (Ettore Manni), the architect’s assistant who reminds her of the working-class background she’s worked hard to leave behind. But Le Amiche’s most cutting social observations stem from a group of wealthy, indolent women, who Clelia meets by chance when one of them, Rosetta (Madeleine Fischer), attempts suicide in the hotel room next to hers. Quickly befriended by Momina (Yvonne Furneaux), the clear alpha female, Clelia gets drawn into a world that seems increasingly callous and meaningless, leaving her uncertain of where she belongs.

BD50 + DVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC | 01:46:02 | 40.9 Gb + 7.1 Gb
Language: Italiano
Subtitles: English
Genre: Drama, Romance

Director: Michelangelo Antonioni
Cast: Eleonora Rossi Drago, Gabriele Ferzetti, Franco Fabrizi
Country: Italy


• David Forgacs and Karen Pinkus - in this new video interview, film scholars David Forgacs and Karen Pinkus discuss some of the key themes in Le Amiche, the emergence of alienation as a key element in Michelangelo Antonioni's work, Cesare Pavese's novella Tra donne sole and some of the changes that were made in the film, the changing landscape around marriage and relationships in Italy at the time when the film was made, etc. The interview was recorded in New York in 2016 for Criterion. In English, not subtitled. (28 min).

• Eugenia Paulicelli - in this new video interview, scholar Eugenia Paulicelli discusses the important role fashion had in Michelangelo Antonioni's films and its significance for Italy's post-war image abroad. The interview was conducted in New York in 2016 for Criterion. In English, not subtitled. (23 min).