Some reflections on Antonioni, sound and the silence of La notte | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1751-4193
  • E-ISSN: 1751-4207


Michelangelo Antonioni is usually extolled as a director essentially concerned with the visual image. However, Antonioni was as interested in the aural as he was in the visual aspect of his films, and this article addresses this neglected area of discussion by considering what we may call Antonioni's acoustic turn of the early 1960s. With (1960), in fact, the soundtrack of Antonioni's films changes quite radically, as extra-diegetic music is drastically decreased and his films become ostensibly more silent. (1961) deserves particular attention in this respect. This film articulates a manifesto of the director's evolving thoughts on sound and silence, while, at the same time, helping to reveal how contemporaneous innovations in the field of sound recording above all, the introduction of magnetic tape and experimentations in the field of music, particularly those of the movement and John Cage, contributed to the shaping of such thoughts.


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