A tragi-comic tale film revolving around a Roman socialite, you would have to watch The Great Beauty online to really appreciate what made this film win an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film.
The film revolves around Jep Gambardella who is the lead character. He is 65-year-old bachelor who experienced early success as a novel writer when he was just in his twenties. The novel was titled The Human Apparatus. But then he abandoned writing fiction for the relatively comfortable and easier life of a journalist who makes a living penning cultural columns. He is also a public figure in the city of Rome. Though he has already spent more than six decades on this planet he refuses to accept that ageing is inevitable and is actively trying to prevent it by undergoing botox.
A turning point in Jepâ€™s life comes when receives news of the death of his first love. He learns this first hand from her husband. As Jep digests the sad news, he is able to tell the story of his past including his first time in Rome when he had just turned 26. That was when the Roman party culture seduced him and he decided he wanted a part of it for the rest of his life. This coincided with the political turbulence and violence that characterised Italy in the 70s.
In one of Jepâ€™s reflections Rome becomes a metaphor for life and he stresses the point that those who enjoy it the most are the tourists and so everyone had better enjoy their visit while it lasts.