Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 21
  2. Negative: 1 out of 21

Critic Reviews

  1. It is Fellini's face that is peculiarly welcome, the face that -- in a probably fantasizing but pertinent way -- endorses his films.
  2. The New Yorker
    Reviewed by: David Denby
    This Franco-Italian-Scottish co-production, directed by Damian Pettigrew, is an extraordinarily controlled piece of film. [14 April 2003, p.88]
  3. Both completely fascinating and intermittently frustrating; however, as with Fellini's own films, the downside is far outweighed by the pluses.
  4. 80
    Pettigrew assumes that Fellini was a genius, and while this film won't convince any skeptics, the maestro's fans can sink into it like a hot bath.
  5. And if the movie's not particularly visual -- apart from the excerpted scenes from Fellini's extremely visual films -- it's entertaining for the ears. Fellini talks and talks. And like many directors, he talks a good life.
  6. 75
    The newly found footage of Fellini and actor Marcello Mastroianni on the set of "La Dolce Vita" made me want to run out and see that wonderful film yet again.
  7. 75
    Only loosely concerned with behind-the-scenes gossip and is squarely focused on the nature of Fellini's insatiability.
  8. It's a messy, entertaining documentary rooted in -- though not limited to -- the iconically indulgent years of Fellini's later career.
  9. How enlightening you find Damian Pettigrew's obsessive film depends on whether you're as adoring of Fellini as he was of himself; for the devoted, it's a gold mine.
  10. Mr. Pettigrew's affection for Fellini and his films animates this documentary and limits its appeal.
  11. 70
    General audiences will regret the absence of titles identifying various clips and interviewees, but Fellini fans will want to eat the whole thing up with a spoon.
  12. 70
    Offers a fascinating inquiry into memory and art, mixing clips from Fellini's films with contemporary shots of the same locales in and around Rome.
  13. This project is not the last word on Fellini, nor does it replace the director's bizarre self-portraits in Intervista or the TV special A Director's Notebook. It even irritates a bit, as none of the speakers is identified until the end.
  14. Unfortunately, the film assumes viewers have such a vast knowledge of Fellini's life and films that it's likely to play best to graduate film students.
  15. It's the many thoughtful, eloquent interviews with Fellini himself that serve as the heart of the film.
  16. This portrait of the fabulist whose images are as haunting as those of Giorgio de Chirico is a disappointment, not to mention a squandered opportunity.
  17. Its fascination may be limited to those already very familiar with his works and collaborators - and his sensual, highly subjective style.
  18. 63
    As a source of information about his life and work, this interview is almost worthless, but as an insight into his style, it is priceless.
  19. Occasionally brilliant, profiting from Fellini's distinct and unmistakable way of looking and seeing. But it goes in circles and wears out its welcome, except for the most hard-core enthusiasts.
  20. 50
    Turns a fond look back at the great Federico Fellini into an occasion for the kind of talky tedium Fellini's own movies would never have allowed.
  21. "By practicing his art, he revealed himself to us." Fellini: I’m a Born Liar provides proof positive: The art indeed reveals far more than this pedestrian documentary ever does.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. LucioF.
    Mar 6, 2009
    Brilliant, compelling, VISIONARY approach that's a roadmap to Fellini's heart and soul.