(Feature film, Italy/France, 1962, 118’, Black and white, VOSTF)
In the suburb of Rome, the translator Vittoria breaks her engagement with her boyfriend, the writer Ricardo, after a troubled night. Vittoria goes to downtown to meet her mother, who is addicted to Stock Market, and she meets the broker Piero in a day of crash in the Stock Market. The materialist Piero and the absent Vittoria begin a short-lived relationship.
“The Eclipse begins with an agonizing and drawn out break up. It's several minutes before any meaningful dialogue; the silences speak more than the actual individuals involved ever could. Vittoria (as played by Vitti) is by her own admission "tired, depressed, disgusted and disorientated". When meeting her feckless mother who gambles daily at the stock exchange, she meets Piero, a stockbroker (played by Alain Delon), who pursues her, even though she rejects his advances. To Vittoria, love is a great effort. Piero on the other hand is ruthlessly materialistic and successful; an illustration of the goings on at the Rome stock exchange where he thrives. He too is insensitive - when a drunk steals his car and drives it into the river, he is more concerned about the car than the fate of the dead man. He represents the vitality of capitalism; the source perhaps of contemporary human alienation, and her romantic and brooding personality, so at odds with his, dooms their future - she is unable to love or know him, so she chooses to be alone rather than marry him.”