Form as a dimension of meaning has little to do with morality, and yet as the prize of discipline it is invested with ethical character. This is the central paradox of Visconti's Death in Venice just as it is of Mann's novella. I will discuss elements of form and dissolution in the film, the discrepancies between meaning and manner, between profits of the plague and the price of perfection. I assume a knowledge of both novel and film. The novel remains the best guide to the film's structure….
In Il Gattopardo and L'Étranger Visconti worked close to respected literary texts. In Death in Venice he follows Mann's schema so faithfully at times that one inevitably attends to...
(The entire section is 1842 words.)