Wealthy playboy Jep (Servillo) should have been a great novelist, but after publishing just one book he has instead frittered his life away on parties and self-aggrandisement. On the morning after his outrageously decadent (and cinematically delirious) 65th birthday celebrations, he suddenly decides to go in search of some genuine meaning in life – the ‘great beauty’ of the title. His subsequent odyssey through the Rome of his memories, dreams and fantasies exposes him to the hypocrisy and venality of modern Italy, but also to profound spirituality and splendour.
Certificate: 15 Distributor: Artificial Eye
Dir. Paolo Sorrentino, Italy/France, 2013, 142 mins, subtitles
Cast: Toni Servillo, Carlo Verdone, Sabrina Ferilli