Paris 1938. Young philosophy teacher Marcello Clerici is absorbed by his past, dwelling on the dramatic event that has marked his entire life. Marcello believes that as a young boy he killed a driver who attempted to have homosexual relations with him, and has been searching for a way to redeem his guilt ever since. Pursuing his own desire for normalcy, when fascism rises to power he welcomes the regime with open arms. Marcello’s private life also reveals clear conformist ten- dencies: he’s engaged to the lower middle-class Giulia, who he’s convinced that, once married, will become a “normal” lady. The chance to overcome his guilt presents itself in the form of a pro- posal from the OVRA, the secret fascist police: Marcello must lead their hitmen to his former uni- versity professor, a political dissident. By helping in this crime, Marcello believes he can make amends for the murder he committed as a young boy: this time, indeed, death is justified by his principles. The years pass and on July 25, 1943, as Rome is rejoicing the fall of fascism, by chance Marcello runs into the man he thought he killed as a young boy....

In the presence of Director

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