La Dolce Vita

Critics Consensus

An epic, breathtakingly stylish cinematic landmark, La Dolce Vita remains riveting in spite of -- or perhaps because of -- its sprawling length.



Reviews Counted: 58

liked it

Audience Score

User Ratings: 34,006


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 4.2/5

You may have noticed some of the recent changes we have made. To read more about what we’ve been working on behind the scenes, please check out our new RT Product Blog here.

Want to See

Add Rating
My Rating    

Movie Info

In this Federico Fellini film, Marcello Mastrioanni stars as Fellini's alter ego, here depicted as a gossip columnist. Having left his dreary provincial existence behind, Mastrioanni wanders through an ultra-modern, ultra-sophisticated, ultra-decadent Rome. Throughout his adventures, Mastrioanni's dreams, fantasies, nightmares, and fears are mirrored by the hedonism all around him.

Watch it now


Marcello Mastroianni
as Marcello Rubino
Anouk Aimée
as Maddalena
Alain Cuny
as Steiner
Annibale Ninchi
as Rubino's Father
Lex Barker
as Robert
Jacques Sernas
as Matinee Idol
Renee Longanni
as Signora Steiner
Walter Santesso
as Paparazzo
Alan Dijon
as Frankie Stout
Renée Longarini
as Signora Steiner
Alain Dijon
as Frankie Stout
Giulio Questi
as Don Giulio
Cesarino Miceli Picardi
as Irate Man in Nightclub
Adriana Moneta
as Prostitute
Oscar Ghiglia
as Their Pimp
Gino Marturano
as Their Pimp
Harriet White
as Sylvia's Secretary
Gio Staiano
as Effeminate Male
Adriano Celentano
as Rock 'n' Roll Singer
Archie Savage
as Negro Dancer
Giacomo Gabrielli
as Maddalena's Father
Rina Franchetti
as Their Mother
Aurelio Nardi
as Their Uncle
Alfredo Rizzo
as Television Director
Marianna Leibl
as Yvonne's Companion
Iris Tree
as Poetess
Harriet Medin
as Sylvia's Secretary
Nico Otzak
as Sophisticated Prostitute
Vadim Wolkonsky
as Prince Mascalchi
Rosemary Rennel Rodd
as English Medium
Ferdinando Brofferio
as Maddalena's Lover
Ida Galli
as Debutante of the Year
Loretta Ramaciotti
as Woman in Seance
Giulio Girola
as Police Commissioner
Mino Doro
as Nadia's Lover
Carlo Musto
as Transvestite
Tito Buzzo
as Muscle Man
Sondra Lee
as Spoleto Ballerina
Leontine Van Strein
as Matinee Idol's Girl Friend
Leo Coleman
as Negro Dancer
Riccardo Garrone
as Riccardo, the Villa Owner
as Nicollina
Franca Pasut
as Girl Covered with Feathers
Enrico Glori
as Nadia's Admirer
Enzo Cerusico
as Photojournalist
Enzo Doria
as Photojournalist
Giulio Paradisi
as Photojournalist
Henry Thody
as Press Conference Journalist
Donatella Della Nora
as Press Conference Journalist
Maite Morand
as Press Conference Journalist
Donato Castellaneta
as Press Conference Journalist
John Francis Lane
as Press Conference Journalist
Concetta Ragusa
as Press Conference Journalist
Francois Dieudonne
as Press Conference Journalist
Mario Mallarno
as Press Conference Journalist
Nadia Balabine
as Press Conference Journalist
Umberto Felici
as Press Conference Journalist
Maurizio Guelfi
as Press Conference Journalist
Leonida Repaci
as Steiner's Other Guest
Anna Salvatore
as Steiner's Other Guest
Letizia Spadini
as Steiner's Other Guest
Margherita Russo
as Steiner's Other Guest
Winie Vagliani
as Steiner's Other Guest
Desmond O'Grady
as Steiner's Other Guest
Mario Conocchia
as Lawyer with Nadia's Bra
Umberto Orsini
as Man in Sunglasses That Helps Nadia Strip
Lucia Vasilico
as Young Woman Making Confession at Nadia's Party
Giovanna Busetti
as Lying Child of The Miracle
Massimo Busetti
as Bimbo del miracolo
Princess of Monteroduni
as Lady in White Coat at Castle
Francesco Consalvo
as Scalise's Assistant
Maria Teresa Vianello
as Woman at Airport
Angela Giavalisco
as Woman at Airport
Tiziano Cortini
as Movie News Cameraman
Maria Mazzanti
as Woman at Airport
Tomás Torres
as Gianelli
Gloria Hendy
as Woman in Via Veneto
Noel Sheldon
as Man in Via Veneto
April Hennessy
as Woman in Via Veneto
Angela Wilson
as Woman in Via Veneto
Giovanni Querrel
as Man at Nightclub
I. Campanino
as Man at Nightclub
Teresa Tsao
as Woman in Nightclub
Giulio Citti
as Man at Nightclub
Lisa Schneider
as Woman in Miracle Sequence
Aldo Vasco
as Man in Miracle Sequence
Francisco Lori
as Man in Miracle Sequence
Romolo Giordani
as Man at Castle
Ada Passeri
as Woman in Miracle Sequence
Nina Hohenlohe
as Woman at Castle
Maria Marigliano
as Massamilla
Mario De Grenet
as Man at Castle That Dislikes Dog's Smell
Franco Rossellini
as The Beautiful Horseman
Joan Antequera
as Woman at Castle
View All

News & Interviews for La Dolce Vita

Critic Reviews for La Dolce Vita

All Critics (58) | Top Critics (18)

  • Fellini has set out to move us with the depravity of contemporary life and has chosen what seems to me a poor method: cataloging sins. Very soon we find ourselves thinking: Is that all?

    May 1, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Everything has changed, and nothing has changed. How sour it still is.

    Jun 1, 2011 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

    David Fear

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Perhaps many spectators will squirm at the three-hour length of the film or of some of its sequences (though director Federico Fellini cut some 30 minutes from his final print), yet others will never notice they've sat that long.

    May 8, 2007 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • The film was hugely successful and widely praised in its time, though it's really nothing more than the old C.B. De Mille formula of titillation and moralizing.

    May 8, 2007 | Full Review…
  • There are perhaps a couple of party scenes too many, and the peripheral characters can be unconvincing, but the stylish cinematography and Fellini's bizarre, extravagant visuals are absolutely riveting.

    Jan 26, 2006 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Everyone has a favorite scene.

    Dec 27, 2004

Audience Reviews for La Dolce Vita


Told in a brilliant episodic structure, this fascinating character study is the truest definition of Felliniesque: an exceptional film that is magical in its fanciful depiction of glamour in Roman aristocracy and depressing in the way it shows the decadence of a society and of man himself.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

Italian Movie about a player that in 1960 must have raised eyebrows, I didnt enjoy it 1 star

Bruce Bruce
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer


Essential surrealist film, La Dolce Vita is an early critique to press photography, bourgeois society, special attention to stars and social decadence.

Lucas Martins
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer


This doesn't happen very often, but I must say, I'm rather baffled. I'm not sure how I truly feel about this movie. I don't know if I truly get it. I'm a smart guy, and I'd like to think I can 'get' artsy European cinema, but I am simultaneously aware of why this is called a classic but also baffled as to why it is so adored. The film tells the story of a tabloid photographer in Rome in the 50s who discovers that the high society world isn't all that it seems, that trying to find a balance betwween the relics of the past and the ever-growing ways of the modern world is complicated, and that it can be quite a challenge to discover who one really is amidst all of this. That's pretty much it. That's the plot in it's most simplified way. It doesn't take long to really get all of this, but the film is just under three hours. I really don't think it needed to be. However,the film is wall to wall with style and cinematic craft. The film has a neat structure (it takes place over the course of about a weeks worth of days and nights, though not consecutively), and there's all kinds of religious imagery and symbolism-allowing the viewer to either just read into it like there's no tomorrow, or just take it at face value. Normally I'm cool with this sort of thing, but again, the movie is just about 3 hours...and kinda slow at times. The film could have had far more substance, especially given the theme and premise, but the slice of life stuff it quite nice too. It just all happens to ramble far too often. Maybe I'm being too hard on this though. Maybe I should have been really exhauted and had my mind on other things when I sat down to watch it. Or maybe (and I'm probably in the minority here) Fellini was more full of crap than people might like to admit. I loved 8 1/2 , but I was in a different mood and mindset when I saw that. I do love the music and cinematography though. There's some really gorgeous (and sometiems surreal) images, and some sequences are just fantastic, but it's all just kinda hard to endure in one setting. Ther performances aren't bad, but it seems like Fellini was more interested in just letting everything just run wild instead of having a far tighter hold on things. Maybe the issues Im haivng with this can be attributed to the fact that, as a bunch of critics and scholars have said, this was a transitional film for Fellini between his neo-realistic stuff, and his whimsical art film. It has elements of both, and they are done well, but maybe they just don't blend all that wonderfully. I'm rambling, much lke the movie. I didn't hate it, but I found it very hard to endure. Is it a really good movie? Yeah. Is it really all that influential? Sure. Does it deserve all the accolades and respect it gets? To an extent. You should see this, just to say you finally saw it, because it is worth it. As a cohesive masterpiece though, I didn't find it to be that exactly. 4 stars for the film overall, and an extra half star just for the style and technique.

Chris Weber
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

La Dolce Vita Quotes

News & Features