Sleeper Beauty: Belcourt's The Great Beauty is the Word-of-Mouth Movie of the Moment

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The Belcourt had booked The Great Beauty, Paolo Sorrentino’s dazzling reverie about an Italian celebrity journalist starting to feel his age, for just one week before It's a Wonderful Life settled in for its annual blockbuster holiday run. Sensing a groundswell of enthusiasm, the theater hauled off and scheduled it to reopen a week later, starting today.

Smart move.

We haven’t heard Nashville moviegoers generate this kind of word-of-mouth buzz since — I dunno, Let the Right One In, which ended up playing in Hillsboro Village for months. Two days after the Sorrentino film opened the first time around, we ran into Belcourt regular Richard Vance in the lobby. He’d already seen it twice and was going again. Christine Kreyling loved it. William Tyler loved it. Craig D. Lindsey loved it. (He named it his movie of the year.) Folks who never see foreign films are loving it, as much for the Architectural Digest-portfolio shots of Rome as for lead actor Toni Servillo’s suave world-weariness.

If your taste in movies lands anywhere between the voluptuous excesses of Bertolucci’s The Conformist and Baz Lurhmann’s Gatsby, take a chance on it — then come back and tell us what you think. (And if it’s voluptuous excess of another sort you’re seeking, the documentary Bettie Page Reveals All plays right next door.)

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