Saturday, September 26, 2015

I CLOWNS - Federico Fellini (1970)

 I first saw "The Clowns" in an art theatre back in the 70's, and many years later I bought a VHS copy of it, but I never had any way to share it until now. After I got about half way through thinking about writing this, I found out that these days it streams on Amazon Prime!
 Go figure!
It's so weird what streams on Amazon and Netflix and what doesn't! Just when I think everything is out there, I look for something mainstream that I want to watch, and nobody streams it, and then I'll find movies like this that I thought nobody knows about, and it's readily available! Whatever, either way, if you've got a Prime account, and you want to watch something really interesting, then I do suggest you go and check out "The Clowns!!"

"The Clowns" was a TV movie made by Federico Fellini, and might just be the first film I ever saw that was a movie about making a movie, a film inside a film!

 Pretty hard to ignore the fact that the circus is in town when they pitch the tent right outside your front door!

 The circus was full of an odd manner of freaks!

 And then there were "The Clowns!!"

 The boy at the beginning of the film was Federico Fellini, and his Mom had to take him back home from the circus because the clowns scared him. What he didn't like the most was that they looked like all the weirdos of many ilks that inhabited his village, the freaks, the drunks, the homeless, and the military!

 So Fellini decides to make a documentary about clowns!
Did I tell you this movie was insane? Here's the beautiful starlet Anita Ekberg in a cameo as a rich woman who wants to buy a panther!
I'm assuming it's a statement of some kind!

 Tristan Remy was an actual authority on clowns, and the author of a book entitled "Clown Scenes!"

 The white hat is what distinguishes this style of clowns from all the others! This type of clown was called the white clown! The rest of their outfit could be almost anything, but they always wore the white hat!

When Fellini gathers a group of white clowns together to discuss the roots and history of their act, the first thing they do, is get into a big argument! These clowns take their clownmanship very seriously!

In the not too distant future, clowns will probably end up to be a totally forgotten commodity! They are violent, and there is almost nothing sacred to them! Clowns make fun of everybody and everything, and that is just not going to be acceptable in the modern PC world! The clown lawsuits will be endless, because nobody can take a joke anymore without being offended!

Beautiful! The circus has it's own building! In Bakersfield, there's a round building like this called The Dome that has concerts in it these days, but it was originally called "Strongbow Stadium," and was built in the 50's specifically to host another set of professional clowns, big time wrasslers! They were that popular!

Charlie Chaplin's daughter Victoria makes a brief cameo appearance as herself, and why not?

Real clowns decorate their homes with more clown stuff!

The mockumentary parts of the film are quite enlightening!
Real clowns chose to perform for anybody and everybody............

.............including Prisons, Madhouses, and Mental Hospitals!

The interviews with all the clowns are brilliant!

The movie ends with one big crazy clown funeral to celebrate the death of the clown!
Here's just a partial list of some of the many real clowns that grace this film with their presence!

One of my favourite parts is toward the end, when this interviewer asks Fellini this poignant question!! "What is the message?"

In true clown style, the answer is a bucket that comes down out of nowhere and lands squarely on Fellini's head!

 If you'd like to see the biggest collection of creepy clown posters that I've ever seen, then go right here to this website called "Why I Fear Clowns!" 
The circus music and the beautiful trumpet duet from the end credits were written by the prolific Nino Roto who was a frequent contributor to Fellini's film works! Here's but a small taste of the man's talents!

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