Monday, October 17, 2011

The Bicycle Thief

I admit I'm not a great fan of Italian cinema. Maybe because I've always found it too over the top. It could also be that the first Italian movies that I saw where broad Italian sex comedies or movies like "Life is Beautiful" that push sentimentality to a point that I find annoying.

Still, when I saw that TCM was doing a night of Italian Neorealist movies, I decided to give them a shot. And I'm glad I did, if only because I was able to enjoy "The Bicycle Thief", a really wonderful movie. Filmed with amateur actors in the streets of Rome, this amazing movie tells the simple story of a man who finally finds a job, but one that requires a bicycle. And then, that bicycle is stolen. This is a heartbreaking movie that moves one in so many ways. And it is not over the top. It is true and honest. And the performances by Lamberto Maggiorani and Enzo Staiola are magnificent. Both are truly outstanding.

I loved this movie. And I now want to get the Criterion DVD for extras.

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