Cinema: Existential Momism

The Empty Canvas is one of those "international" movie projects that appears to have been dreamed up by its principals (during a transatlantic jet flight?) in a spirit of reckless unity. Based on a novel by Alberto Moravia and directed by Italy's Damiano Damiani, the film stars the U.S.'s durable Bette Davis, Germany's Horst Buchholz and Belgium's Catherine Spaak. It is chiefly notable for the fun of watching Davis breast the New Wave plot with bitchy authority.

In a blonde Dutch-boy bob, Bette looks like a degenerate Hans Brinker, and she plays a wealthy...

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