The Decameron (review)

Directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini, The Decameron is the first installment of The Trilogy of Life (The Canterbury Tales, Arabian Nights) and it’s an adaptation of Giovanni Boccaccio’s book. Throughout the film, they explore themes such as sexual liberation, adultery, and violence in a form of vulgar humor. Pushing the boundaries of how far a joke can go. 

For instance, religion played a big part of the film, however it wasn’t portrayed as the great almighty, but rather it became the running joke of half of the stories. Who would have thought we would see nuns wanting to explore their sexuality? Seems like Pasolini had fun jabbing the Catholic church.

Now as for the stories itself, Pasolini adapted nine of Boccaccio’s stories. Being a film that was launched in 1971, I’m impressed by the technical achievements that were made; especially in the production design. My favorite part of the film was Giotto’s pupil recreating a Fresco painting on his dream. Ending the story with the phrase:  “why produce a work of art, when it’s so nice to dream about it?“. Could it be that Pasolini was also talking about his works of art? 

On the other hand,  the audio of the film wasn’t that great. The voice of the actors didn’t match with the movement of the actors mouth. Plus, I wasn’t that of a fan of a few stories. Some were more engaging than others. Now, would I watch this movie again? Probably? Ask me again in a couple of years…

-Ana Sofía Cintrón Mediavilla

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