Unlike most of his neorealist contemporaries, Roberto Rossellini's concerns were not just political, but global and spiritual. Invited by the prime minister to come film in India in 1957, Rossellini made this influential semi-documentary and a more scattered ten-part television series. The feature, India, Matri Buhmi, is filled with gorgeous color photography and long takes of life in India--its people, customs, wildlife, natural terrain, and modernization. If that's not spicy enough for you, here's some arthouse gossip: Rossellini's writing partner on this project, Sonali DasGupta, became a romantic partner as well, leading to an unsightly divorce from Ingrid Bergman, and his fourth marriage to DasGupta.
Roberto Rossellini---France/Italy---1958---90 mins.