Close Up

3 - 20 May 2018: Oedipus Rex


Oedipus Rex
Pier Paolo Pasolini
1967 | 104 min | Colour | Digital
Italian with English subtitles

"Pasolini turned to myth in the search for a “primal cinema” that occupied the late stage of his tragically shortened career, choosing Oedipus Rex to delve into perhaps the most primal myth of all. Yet Pasolini explicitly rejected any Freudian trappings of the myth, offering an Oedipus less a man scarred by his forbidden intimacy with his mother than a cautionary emblem of willful ignorance. Pasolini transforms the myth into a critique of innocence, not as an absence of guilt but rather as an avoidance of knowledge. Pasolini's Oedipus is not a crusader for truth brought down by fate and hubris but rather a man who blunders into his fate precisely by refusing to confront it. Pasolini’s second film set in antiquity and his first in color, Oedipus Rex explores a noticeably more elaborate art direction and costumes than his previous evocations of a vanished ancient world.” – Harvard Film Archive

Part of our season on Pier Paolo Pasolini