11-02-1975

Pier Paulo Pasolini

PIER PAOLO PASOLINI, Italian film director, died (b. 1922); Pasolini distinguished himself as a philosopher, linguist, novelist, playwright, filmmaker, newspaper and magazine columnist, actor, painter and political figure. He demonstrated a unique and extraordinary cultural versatility, in the process becoming a highly controversial figure. Though openly Gay from the very start of his career (thanks to a sex scandal that sent him packing from his provincial hometown to live and work in Rome), Pasolini rarely dealt with homosexuality in his movies. The subject is featured prominently in Teorema (1968), where Terence Stamp’s mysterious God-like visitor seduces the son of an upper-middle-class family; passingly in Arabian Nights (1974), in an idyll between a king and a commoner that ends in death; and, most darkly of all, in Salo (1975), his infamous rendition of the Marquis de Sade’s compendium of sexual horrors, The 120 Days of Sodom.