Clelia (Rossi Drago) returns to her home town of Turin to manage an upscale clothing boutique. Through a chance encounter, she meets a group of young women who welcome her into their lives: wealthy socialite Momina (Furneaux), artist Nene (Cortese), party girl Mariella (Pancani), and Rosetta (Fischer), an unstable girl whose suicide attempt brings them together. Clelia then falls for Carlo (Manni), but is she willing to put her career on hold for love?
Antonioni’s fourth feature is a thematic and stylistic bridge between his early melodramas and his later films of alienation and ennui. Compelling chemistry among the female characters, a gorgeous mise-en-scene and even more gorgeous clothes only accentuate the underlying theme of human isolation. Very much of its time (the frivolous women gossip endlessly about men), this restored classic also foreshadows the pending women’s movement in Clelia’s independent spirit. This fascinating and pivotal entry in the Antonioni oeuvre deserves a wider audience.