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La Traviata

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Original title
La Traviata
Running time
109 min.
Italy Italy
Francesco Maria Piave, Franco Zeffirelli (Novel: Alexandre Dumas fils)
Giuseppe Verdi
Ennio Guarnieri
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Accent Films B.V.
Musical. Drama | Opera
Movie Groups
Alexandre Dumas fils Adaptations
Synopsis / Plot
"La Traviata" is simply that of "Camille." The principal incidents of Dumas's play are reproduced with general fidelity in the opera. In the first act there are scenes of gayety in the house of Violetta--dancing, feasting, and love-making. Among the devotees of the courtesan is Alfredo Germont, a young man of respectable Provencal family. He joins in the merriment, singing a drinking song with Violetta, but his devotion to her is unlike that of his companions. He loves her sincerely, passionately, and his protestations awaken in her sensations never felt before. For a moment, she indulges in a day-dream of honest affection, but banishes it with the reflection that the only life for which she is fitted is one devoted to the pleasures of the moment, the mad revels rounding out each day, and asking no care of the moment. But at the last the voice of Alfredo floats in at the window, burdening the air and her heart with an echo of the longing to which she had given expression in her brief moment of thoughtfulness. She yields to Alfredo's solicitations and a strangely new emotion, and abandons her dissolute life to live with him alone.

In the second act the pair are found housed in a country villa not far from Paris. From the maid Alfredo learns that Violetta has sold her property in the city--house, horses, carriages, and all--in order to meet the expenses of the rural establishment. Conscience-smitten, he hurries to Paris to prevent the sacrifice, but in his absence Violetta is called upon to make a much greater. Giorgio Germont, the father of her lover, visits her, and, by appealing to her love for his son and picturing the ruin which is threatening him and the barrier which his illicit association with her is placing in the way of the happy marriage of his sister, persuades her to give him up. She abandons home and lover, and returns to her old life in the gay city, making a favored companion of the Baron Duphol. In Paris, at a masked ball in the house of Flora, one of her associates, Alfredo finds her again, overwhelms her with reproaches, and ends a scene of excitement by denouncing her publicly and throwing his gambling gains at her feet.

Baron Duphol challenges Alfredo to fight a duel. The baron is wounded. The elder Germont sends intelligence of Alfredo's safety to Violetta, and informs her that he has told his son of the great sacrifice which she had made for love of him. Violetta dies in the arms of her lover, who had hurried to her on learning the truth, only to find her suffering the last agonies of disease.
1983: BAFTA Awards: Best Production Design & Costume Design. 4 Nominations
1982: 2 Nominations for Oscar: Best Art Direction, Costume Design
1982: Golden Globes: Nominated Best Foreign Film
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