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La Siciliana Ribelle (The Sicilian Girl) (2009)

tomatometer

27

Average Rating: 5/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 8

No consensus yet.

audience

62

liked it
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 665

My Rating

Movie Info

A young girl gets pushed beyond her limits and exercises legal justice swiftly and brutally in this earnest biopic of a real-life Mafia betrayer. The year is 1991. Rita Atria (Veronica D'Agostino), a young Sicilian girl from the village of Balta, has grown up completely enshrined in organized crime -- to such a degree that she takes many of the mob's activities for granted. This all changes when her honest father and brother get slain, which breaks Rita's heart. In response, she begins to slyly

Unrated,

Art House & International, Drama

Nov 30, 2010

$70.9k

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All Critics (32) | Top Critics (11) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (13) | DVD (1)

The Sicilian Girl seems so beholden to the historical outline that it never comes alive as either a character study or a crime thriller.

October 15, 2010 Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch | Comment (1)
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic

D'Agostino beautifully captures Rita's innocence, anger, confusion and her increasingly tough resolve.

October 1, 2010 Full Review Source: Washington Post | Comment (1)
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Watching this is like going to the dentist for a root canal, but he makes a mistake and injects the novocaine into your brain.

September 30, 2010 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Amenta does neither the subject nor Atria justice with this acceptable, uninspired dramatization.

September 23, 2010 Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Comment (1)
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Amenta was deeply moved by Rita's story, but his prosaic direction can't do it justice.

September 16, 2010 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Comment (1)
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Not to stoke any rivalries, but the movie's no Gomorrah, the recent, excellent Italian crime drama ripped from the headlines made by the Neopolitan mob.

September 10, 2010 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Comment (1)
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

... manages to combine mob opera with true crime to tell the story of Sicilian mob culture from the inside.

December 3, 2010 Full Review Source: Seanax.com
Seanax.com

While The Sicilian Girl has a more biographical lean over a showcase of mafia bloodshed, there's still plenty of drama to go around.

October 29, 2010 Full Review Source: Moviedex

...the real story of Rita Atria is more interesting than Amenta's film, which feels like a made-for-television movie intended for an audience already familiar with the story

October 15, 2010 Full Review Source: Playback:stl | Comment (1)
Playback:stl

The Sicilian Girl is beautifully photographed, intelligently performed and full of real-life surprises.

October 1, 2010 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Amenta turns the true-life saga of a 17-year-old Italian girl who testified against the Mafia in a famous 1992 trial in Palermo into a fictionalized, conventional, fairly diverting melodrama.

September 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix
Boston Phoenix

But the movie hinges on Rita, and both as a young girl (Miriana Faja) and as a young woman (D'Agostino), she is magnificent.

September 21, 2010 Full Review Source: Moving Pictures Magazine | Comment (1)
Moving Pictures Magazine

A major part of the screenplay is the resistance by the authorities toward Rita herself, as an unsophisticated woman from the impoverished South.

September 20, 2010 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

Like many movies based on true stories, it's hamstrung by a need to stay faithful and respectful to the original players, and it never really comes alive.

September 16, 2010 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid | Comment (1)
Combustible Celluloid

When Amenta's storytelling isn't playing like greatest hits, he's hitting us over the head.

September 10, 2010 Full Review Source: Reeling Reviews
Reeling Reviews

The film is uncomfortably ensconced in the very old-school crime-family tropes its social message intends to undermine.

August 11, 2010 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

The film delves into the wrenching difficulties of Atria's case, and the lengths she had to go to find justice.

August 5, 2010 Full Review Source: AV Club | Comment (1)
AV Club

Fact-based, revenge-fueled tale of a female teen's determination to expose a particularly virulent branch of the Sicilian Mafia is a worthy but modest effort.

August 4, 2010 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Audience Reviews for La Siciliana Ribelle (The Sicilian Girl)

Based on a true story, the overdose of (nonsensical) fictionalization mars the movie. After watching the movie, I read about Rita Atria on Wikipedia. There was a major difference between the movie's story and the description on Wikipedia. I don't consider either of these sources to be entirely factual, but the movie could have done better without loads of illogical sequences. I was also disappointed by the movie ending without mentioning what happened to one of the main characters. Having said that, I still liked the movie (after all, crime movies based on real life are my cup of tea) and don't mind recommending it (to those who are ready to do that on their own risk). Okay, silence now!!!
June 1, 2011
imrealgod

Super Reviewer

The true story of a young woman who demonstrates incredible courage of conviction, and determination, by going up against the Sicilian mafia when no one else dared. The fact that she succeeded at great personal cost is now history. This well done film shows how the mafia groomed their own children to follow in crime. Rita must have been heaven sent to have such a powerful effect on people's lives in Italy, and at such a young age, too.
April 3, 2011
itsjustme2004

Super Reviewer

As a young girl, Rita(Miriana Faja) thinks the world of her father, Don Michele(Marcello Mazzarella), as protector of their Sicilian village, aided by her uncle Don Salvo(Mario Pupella). However, ugly bits of truth begin to intercede with this fairy tale reality, especially when Don Michele is gunned down in the street, dying in his daughter's arms. Her older brother Carmelo(Carmelo Galati) tells her that it was in fact Don Salvo in a power grab but to wait until the time is right. That time comes seven years later while Rita has bided her time patiently gathering information. But it is Carmelo who ends up dead, forcing Rita(Veronica D'Agostino) to seek the unlikeliest of allies.

Inspired by a true story, "The Sicilian Girl" is a compelling look into the Sicilian Mafia. As it is told from Rita's point of view, any romantic notions of it are peeled away at the same time she is learning the truth, as one Prince Charming replaces another in the movie's vernacular. But it is not Vito(Francesco Casisa) we are talking about, as he acts out of pure ambition, unlike some of his fellow islanders who suffer out of fear. There is another way as the movie charts a course with its subtle depiction of violence(see, sometimes less is more) in a world full of possibilities not only for Sicily, but also for Rita. Sadly, the movie telegraphs two of its biggest punches but, man-oh-man, did I not see that ending coming.
January 14, 2012
Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

A tense account, based on a true story, of a young woman who stands up to the evil men who rule her village in Sicily, in order to bring them to justice for killing her father and her brother. The courage and righteous anger of the girl, Rita, is portrayed with real fire by Veronica D'Agostino. This viewer had to take several breaks in order to finish this, as the tension is almost unbearable. In the end, she must forsake everyone who was dear to her to see her mission accomplished. A very moving film that will continue to haunt for some time.
November 9, 2011
Mark Abell

Super Reviewer

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