When I look at an empty screen as the house lights dim, two faces are suddenly conjured up before my eyes. One is Garbo‘s, the other Magnani‘s. Garbo‘s is of romantic dreams, of a beauty so ethereal to seem both of this world and out of this world. Magnani‘s is the face of indomitable reality, of a beauty so profound to seem simultaneously pain and ecstasy. There are other great actresses to whom I gladly pay homage, but Garbo and Magnani are two giants of the screen for me. Though they seem in absolute contrast, even in total contradiction, the woman of the north and the woman of the south merge into one in an exalted paean to the terrible poetry of life.