Time of Indifference

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Time of Indifference
Gli indifferenti (film).jpg
Directed by Francesco Maselli
Written by
Produced by Franco Cristaldi
Cinematography Gianni Di Venanzo
Edited by Ruggero Mastroianni
Music by Giovanni Fusco
  • Lux Film
  • Ultra Film
  • Vides Cinematografica
  • Lux Compagnie Cinématographique de France [1] [2]
Distributed by Interfilm
Release date
  • 1964 (1964)(Italy)
Running time
90 minutes
  • Italy
  • France
Budget751 million lire [1]

Time of Indifference (Italian : Gli indifferenti, lit. 'The indifferent ones') is a 1964 Italian–French drama film directed by Francesco Maselli starring Claudia Cardinale. It is based on the novel Gli indifferenti by Alberto Moravia. [3]



Aging countess Maria Grazia Ardengo and her children Carla and Michele live in a luxurious villa in Rome. Due to the family's bankruptcy, their house has been mortgaged, now owned by inscrupulous businessman Leo, and the furnishings are subject to forced sales. Without the countess' knowledge, her long-time lover Leo has started an affair with her daughter Carla. Both Leo and Carla act out of mere calculation: Leo wants to adorn himself with a young, attractive wife and the Ardengo name, Carla wants to maintain her lifestyle. Michele, intent on killing Leo when he learns of the affair but unable to do so, tries to talk his sister into leaving the house with him and start a life on their own, but eventually both resign to the new conditions.



In its 1965 review, Catholic film magazine Segnalazioni cinematografiche saw strengths on the film's formal side, particularly the acting and cinematography, but deficiencies in the psychology of the characters. [2] Critic A. H. Weiler of The New York Times dismissed Time of Indifference upon its 1966 opening in New York, stating, "it takes itself so seriously and is so bad". [4]

Judging Time of Indifference from a filmhistorical perspective, opinions were still divergent. In his 2009 book The A to Z of Italian Cinema, Gino Molterno called Maselli's film a "finely crafted" and "beautifully photographed" adaptation of Moravia's novel, [3] while Luca Barattoni, in his 2012 Italian Post-Neorealist Cinema, came to a negative conclusion, titling the film "a stiff and vapid photostory, devoid of historical specificity". [5]


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  1. 1 2 Bondanella, Peter (2019). The Italian Cinema Book. Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN   9781839020247.
  2. 1 2 3 "Gli indifferenti". Cinematografo (in Italian). Retrieved 18 September 2023.
  3. 1 2 Moliterno, Gino (2009). "Maselli, Francesco". The A to Z of Italian Cinema. Scarecrow Press. p. 198. ISBN   9780810868960.
  4. Weiler, A. H. (13 October 1966). "Screen: Coburn Gives Crime a Whirl:'Dead Heat on a MerryGo-Round' Opens". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 September 2023.
  5. Barattoni, Luca (2012). "Negotiating Modernity: The Ethics of Disorientation and Entrenchment". Italian Post-Neorealist Cinema. Edinburgh University Press. p. 175. ISBN   9780748640546.