Showing 1 - 1 of 1 Reviews for Ladri di Biciclette (The Bicycle Thief) (Bicycle Thieves)
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Posted on 12/09/10 04:06 PM
The Greatest Films
Vittorio De Sica's Bicycle Theif (or Bicycle Theives), is widely regarded as a masterpiece, and as i watched the film, every minute that went by i came to better understand just why that is.
Filmed in the neo-realist syle of filmmaking,suprisingly the film manages to be quite sentimental at times, but never in spite of the realist aspects, rather these moments compliment the realism in unexpected and devestatingly emotional ways.
The film is about a man with a wife and young son, living in poverty, and struggling to make ends meet. When luck strikes and a job opens up, a requirment is that he have a bicycle to secure the position; and a bicycle he does get, and that's where his problems begin. The film is a series of obstacles taking place over two days, which begins when the protagonist's bike is stolen. The rest of the film is about his search for the bicycle, but more so its about his search for adequacy, in the eyes of his son, but especially within himself.
The film evokes the social conditions and attitues of a time and a place, and in that sense the film works well as a time-capsule, and add to that the realist tendencies of the camerawork, and we as viewers aren't left feeling manipulated; rather we are left pondering why men do the things they do, both to themselves, and each other. We also ask why the world is the way it is, and why in many cases we set ourselves up to fail. Its also quite easy to make modern connections beween this past society and current social conditions we face today, which also lends to the timeless feeling of the film. How the film manages to be both an evocation of a time and place as well as remaining thematically timeless is one of its major strengths.
The cinematography is quite plain, and also plainly brilliant. How such simple images evoke such beauty is one of the films real powers.
The film makes us ask serious questions, such as what is truly important, why we cannot move forward together as opposed to seperately, and hints at mental conditions that trap us in our own feelings, while being unable to register external truths.
The son of the protagonist has numerous powerful scenes, perhaps the most powerful of which happens after his father smacks him in the face after he makes his father feel stupid. What happens after this is truly masterful.
This is a heartwrenching film, from a neo-realist master.