I started to watch "The Great Beauty" ("Le Grande Bellezza"!) waiting for a thoughtful drama about life, but quickly realised this film is not really that, it's a celebration of life and beauty and youth and companionship. And yes, even though the beauty of it all makes you forget for a minute this, it turns out it is still a thoughtful meditation about life, beautifully told. Told through the eyes of journalist Jep Gambardella (the alluring Toni Servillo, never was I so attracted to the, allegedly, 65 year old).
Jep charmed his way through the extravagant nightlife and artlife of Rome for half a century. Since the much talked about triumph of his one and only novel, he has been a permanent resident in the Eternal City's art circles. Events surrounding his birthday make Jep start to evaluate his life, turning his fabled humour on himself and his comrades, and looking for Rome in all its magnificence, exchanging the extravagant nightclubs for a stroll through [almost] abandoned houses of Italian aristocracy.
I doubt I will be re-watching this film, but I will cherish the memory of it.