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‘Who is this Ingrid Bergman?’

Gilberto Perez: Stroheim and Rossellini

14 December 2000
by Arthur Lennig.
Kentucky, 514 pp., £25, December 1999, 0 8131 2138 8
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The Adventures of Roberto Rossellini 
by Tag Gallagher.
Da Capo, 802 pp., £16.95, October 1998, 0 306 80873 0
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... Roberto Rossellini ushered in the movement that came to be known as neo-realism. Unlike Stroheim’s, his is not a realism of meaning but of reticence, of the refusal to compel reality into sense. TagGallagher’s biography of Rossellini is announced as the ‘first in any language’, although I believe there is one in Italian. One may want to quarrel with some of its judgments, but there is no ...

Even If You Have to Starve

Ian Penman: Mod v. Trad

29 August 2013
Mod: A Very British Style 
by Richard Weight.
Bodley Head, 478 pp., £25, April 2013, 978 0 224 07391 2
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... though they were the same thing. (Even at the time, many original modernists spurned Mod as a moody knock-off, a Carnaby Street caricature – wayward ideas replaced by winking insignia and a price tag on everything.) Weight is so stuck on his through-line map that he never stays long enough to see the strangeness of the scenes he’s passing through. (I’m tempted here by the neologism ...

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