The Great Beauty is indeed that, a great beauty to look at. It’s not only a gorgeous film to look at, but it’s film in an equally beautiful way as well. Rome is the backdrop for a film that looks to explore the wonders of life, in past, present and future, as an aging man recounts his life in a position of change. The film embodies a life of high luxury, countless parties, love and what have you, the ultimate dream life for a person. It uses the imagery to not only shape what Jep, our main character, has enjoyed his life through, but also how it has shaped him.
Ultimately, the film is a celebration of life. Jep looks back on all these events throughout his life, how they have shaped him to who he is now, and the pleasures of his adventures. I think The Great Beauty is interested in all these disparate ends that create a person and make up yourself, whether you like it or not. From the people you meet, fall in and out of love with, where you live and party, it makes who you are.
On the other side, Jeb just kind of fell into all this, having wrote a famous novel, and just living off its success for the rest of his life. Feeling some regret, having all the opportunity ahead of him and all just to spend it partying the rest of his life. He’s thinking back if he made the right choice or not, but simultaneously enjoying these memories of what he once was and what he still could become.