Traffic Jam | Chicago Reader

Traffic Jam

The usually genial Luigi Comencini (Bread, Love and Dreams) announced the end of civilization (and also, not coincidentally, of Italy's postwar comedy tradition) in this metaphoric depiction of Italian social life as the ultimate traffic disaster. Godard and Fellini (and to some extent Tati) had already worked over this congested automotive territory, and Comencini never manages to give his own absurdist vision the sharp, aggressive edge it obviously needs. The film is unwieldy and slackly paced, though some of the gridlock imagery, of cars meshed together in terminal immobility, is effectively bizarre. With Alberto Sordi, Marcello Mastroianni, Gerard Depardieu, Ugo Tognazzi, Fernando Rey, Annie Girardot, Miou-Miou, and assorted others (1979).

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