Although the Church is portrayed in the movie in a less-than flattering light there is no doubt that Guido considers himself Catholic. One priest in a cardinal's entourage frankly admits that while the Church condemns Guido's movies, all the priests secretly love them, and that the cardinal would appreciate an autographed photo of Guido's sexy star Claudia (Nicole Kidman). There is also an unpleasant flashback to Guido as a child being beaten by a monsignor/headmaster at his school for consorting on the beach with a prostitute (Fergie) However, despite the hypocrisy and the unpleasant memories Guido's faith is so much a part of him that he can't shake it off.
Before he prepares to make love to his mistress (Penelope Cruz) he removes the crucifix from over the bed - a comical indication that he believes Jesus might be watching. He seeks out the visiting cardinal to consult about his troubled life, but in a scene in a hot-tub when that cardinal responds to his cry of despairing confusion with platitudes about virtue instead of meaningful conversation, Guido sinks beneath the water, remembering the episode that led to the childhood beating. It is as if he is immersed in the very baptismal waters of what it meant to grow up Catholic in that time and place, and for him, those memories are not pleasant.
Ultimately, Guido's love for his wife triumphs over all his other relationships - in the closing sequence, friends and lovers quietly take a literal place in the background of his life, and the film ends on a hopeful note of some kind of possible reconciliation. As his wife drifts into the rear of studio, she sees Guido, raised aloft with the cameraman ready to direct his new film, with his own child-self seated in his lap, and she smiles ... and if that isn't a moment of redemption, I don't know what is.