Rated 5.0

A famous Italian movie director (Daniel Day-Lewis) frets over finding an idea for his next movie, meanwhile grappling with his feelings for his wife (Marion Cotillard), his mistress (Penélope Cruz), his late mother (Sophia Loren) and his former star (Nicole Kidman). Director Rob Marshall and writers Michael Tolkin and Anthony Minghella rethink and reshape the stage musical—adapted in turn from Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2—into a stylish, theatrically heady riff on the theme of professional and personal obsessions. It’s a gutsy move: Adapting Fellini to the stage is one thing, but taking it back to the screen—Fellini’s home turf, as it were—is asking for trouble from the Fellini snobs. Marshall may be the most assured stylist in movies today, and he’s at the top of his game, with élan and visual panache.